The citizenry of the small Japanese town of Nahara have returned to their beloved home town after nearly five years in exile. Nahara, which is in Fukushima Prefecture, had its evacuation ban lifted at midnight by the government. The people of the town have begun to move back to see what there is left of their town.
Nahara is the first of seven towns in the prefecture that has been allowed to resettle. The town is one of so many in Japan that experienced severe radiation poisoning after the Great Japan Earthquake and tsunami of 2011. The earthquake and tsunami caused the destruction and meltdown of three nuclear reactors at the nearby Fukushima nuclear power plant according to The Japan Times.
The town of Nahara has nearly 7,400 people registered as citizens there with nearly 2,700 households. The government has taken a survey of residents and estimates that nearly half of the population of Nahara will return to their home town and try to rebuild their lives. Fewer than one thousand, which make up about 350 households, are expected to venture back in the near future.
When the earthquake and tsunami hit, it caused the reactors to melt down at the nuclear power plant which infected a great part of this island nation, as well as the Pacific Ocean, with huge amounts of radiation. Nahara was within a twenty kilometer radius that had been sectioned off by the government and declared dangerous for human and animal habitation.
A medical clinic for the town is expected to open in early October while the prefecture formalizes plan for building a new medical center there. Many of the citizens will be given buzzers that they can set off in cases of a medical emergency in an effort by the government to respond as quickly as it can to the residents.
There is a supermarket in town which has offered residents free delivery while plans for a huge shopping center is underway and is expected to be completed some time next year. The local water filtration plant, as well as regular tap water, will be constantly monitored on a 24 hour basis and the government has given out dosimeters to residents so that they can keep a constant eye on the local radiation levels.