Katsurao, Tomioka, Namie to be reclassified into 3 zones

8 March 2013

The central government's Nuclear Emergency Response Headquarters task force on the nuclear disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant decided on March 7 to reclassify no-go and evacuation zones in the village of Katsurao and the towns of Tomioka and Namie into three zones.
The three comprise an area difficult for residents to return over a long period of time, a residence-restricted area with visitation-only access, and an area readying for the lifting of evacuation orders.
The village of Katsurao will be reclassified at midnight March 21, the town of Tomioka at midnight March 24, and the town of Namie at midnight March 31.
The designation of Katsurao's area which is difficult for residents to return over a long period of time is expected to be lifted in 2017, six years after the outbreak of the nuclear disaster in March 2011 at the Fukushima Daiichi power station.
The designation of residence-restricted areas with visitation-only access is expected to be lifted in 2016 in the northern half of the village's Hiroyaji area. The designation of other areas is expected to be lifted in 2014.
In the towns of Tomioka and Namie, the designation of areas difficult to return over a long period of time is expected to be lifted in 2017. The designation of other areas of the two towns is expected to be lifted in 2016.
The central government will also lift its designation of no-go and evacuation zones in coastal waters off the towns of Tomioka and Okuma at midnight March 24, when Tomioka's no-go and evacuation zones will be reclassified. The town of Okuma has already been reclassified into three zones.
At midnight on March 31, when no-go and evacuation zones in the town of Namie will be reclassified into the three zones, the government will lift its similar designation of waters off the town.
Among the 11 cities, towns and villages which were designated as no-go and evacuation zones, six municipalities -- Tamura, Kawauchi, Minamisoma, Iitate, Naraha and Okuma –- have already been reclassified into the three zones.
The addition of Katsurao, Tomioka and Namie will put the number of municipalities that are reclassified to nine.
Of the remaining two municipalities, the town of Futaba is expected to be reclassified as early as this spring. The town of Kawamata plans to hold briefing sessions for its residents jointly with the central government's Reconstruction Agency and promote talks to reclassify its no-go and evacuation zones into the three zones.