New potassium iodide supply available to residents near SC's nuclear power plants

The Department of Health and Environmental Control has a new supply, 1.2 million adult doses, of potassium iodide (KI) for distribution to people living within the ten-mile Emergency Planning Zone of five nuclear power plants.

One of those plants is the H.B. Robinson nuclear power plant near Hartsville, in Darlington County.

"Potassium iodide provides additional protection for the thyroid gland against one form of radiation," according to DHEC Director Catherine Templeton. "It is critical to remember this is not a magic pill that protects against all types of radiation. In the event of a nuclear power plant emergency involving the release of radiation, the best advice is to follow the instructions of public safety officials to either stay inside or to evacuate the area in an orderly manner."

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has provided the doses to South Carolina.

Residents can pick up tablets for themselves and their families beginning Monday, April 29.

"Our agency continues to explore ways to help the public understand that KI is not a radiation shield," Templeton said, "and that residents should follow any recommendations given by the state in the event of a radiological release."

The expiration date for the new tablets is October 2017. Residents in possession of tablets with the May 2013 expiration may dispose of those tablets once a new supply has been picked up.

Here's a link to the locations where the new supply can be picked up.