A citizens group last week asked the Greenbelt City Council to support its call for a citizens committee to study relocating county residents to rural Virginia in the event of a nuclear war.
The Nuclear War Crisis Relocation Coalition is urging the Prince George's County Council to set up the 25-member committee, to be made up of citizens "from all walks of life," including medical and administrative personnel, said Laird Towle, a coalition member.
City Clerk Goodie Mills said the council will consider a resolution on the issue at its April 4 meeting.
"I shudder to think how people would get out of a metropolitan area," she said.
Towle said the coalition has received endorsements from towns in Montgomery County, labor unions, businesses and churches. The coalition hopes that with citizen support the Prince George's County Council will accept its resolution and set up the committee.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency has identified Prince George's, along with the rest of the metropolitan area, as a "100 percent risk area" in a nuclear war, one of 400 such target zones in the United States, Towle said.
The county has begun work on a relocation plan but has kept the details secret, to the dismay of the coalition. Towle said citizens should have a voice in the planning and the county should hold public hearings.
He conceded that most people think relocation plans are a bizarre idea because they believe the plans are unfeasible, but he added that experts predict the United States will be involved in a nuclear war by 2000 if it stays on its present course.