Potassium Iodide pill distribution is beginning in the secondary zone, which includes all of Windsor and Essex County.

The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit, in conjunction with the Community Emergency Management Coordinators of Windsor-Essex County, is starting in the secondary zone distribution on Wednesday.

Residents of Windsor and Essex County can now sign up to request their KI Pills by completing the KI request form and consent at www.wechu.org/KI or calling 519-258-2146 ext. 4445.

Health unit officials say KI pills block the thyroid from absorbing radioactive iodine, which may be released during a nuclear incident. In the very unlikely event of a nuclear emergency, KI tablets would help to prevent the long term development of thyroid cancer.

Officials say it is important to point out that the risk has not changed at the Enrico Fermi 2 Nuclear Generating Station (Fermi 2) or Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station, however what has changed is the regulatory framework for Canadian nuclear installations.

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) has mandated that residents within the secondary zone of a nuclear installation have KI pills available in their homes, if they so choose.

While Fermi 2 and Davis-Besse are not regulated by the CNSC, the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit and the Community Emergency Management Coordinators of Windsor-Essex County want the residents living within the secondary zone of Fermi 2 and Davis-Besse to be as prepared as all other Canadian residents.

In the unlikely event of a nuclear emergency involving a release of radioactive iodine, residents within the secondary zone will receive instructions from local and provincial authorities.

KI tablets are only to be taken if instructed by the Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario. They should be stored in a safe, dry, and accessible place along with your 72-hour emergency kit.

For more information on KI pills and KI pill distribution, visit the Health Unit’s website or call 519-258-2146 ext. 4445.

The secondary zone includes a small area in the west end of the municipality of Chatham-Kent.

Residents in the secondary zone in Chatham Kent are encouraged to review information on the Chatham-Kent Public Health Unit blog www.ckpublichealth.com about access to KI pills and KI pill distribution.