Radiation meters will be distributed to about 34,000 children living in the largest city near the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant to monitor their exposure levels.

The decision to hand out the meters in Kawamata, Fukushima prefecture, comes amid growing concern over the safety of children as the nuclear crisis at the plant drags on, posing potential long-term health risks.

City officials said Tuesday the devices, called dosimeters, will be distributed in September to children between ages four and 15 in the city, which has recorded relatively high radiation levels since the March 11 earthquake and tsunami severely damaged the plant.