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Nuke risk iodine pills recalled.

THE Department of Health is considering recalling iodine tablets issued to more than 2.1 million homes in 2002.

A conference held in Co Louth on Friday revealed the tablets do not protect against a nuclear incident at Sellafield.

Speaking at a special meeting of Louth Co Council yesterday, experts for British Nuclear Fuels Ltd said the iodine tablets were effective only when taken in response to a leak of the radioactive isotope iodine 131.

They revealed that Sellafield had stopped handling this isotope a few years ago.

Dr Rex Strong, a physicist with BNFL, said the tablets may even adversely affect people who may be vulnerable to iodine overdose.

A spokesman for the Department of Health said that as far as the Department was aware Sellafield was still handling iodine 131 when the tablets were issued in June 2002.

The spokesman said the Department accepted that this was no longer the case.

CAPTION(S):

DANGER: Sellafield
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Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Mar 28, 2004
Words:157
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