More tanks at embattled Fukushima plant may have leaks

August 23, 2013

THE ASAHI SHIMBUN

More tanks at the stricken Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant site may have leaks as Tokyo Electric Power Co., the plant operator, said on Aug. 22 that high radiation levels were detected near a second section of storage tanks.

Although no confirmation was made of a leak or water accumulating in that area, a TEPCO official said, "We cannot deny the possibility that a minor leak of contaminated water occurred."

TEPCO officials said the latest detection of radiation was in a different section of tanks than the section in which 300 tons of contaminated water was found to have leaked from a tank on Aug. 19.

Radiation levels of between 70 to 100 millisieverts per hour were detected at the bottom of two of the section’s 11 storage tanks.

The tanks each hold about 1,000 tons of contaminated water, from which radioactive cesium has been removed.

An inspection of those tanks found that water levels had not dropped and there were no obvious signs of a leak. The area where the high radiation was detected will be decontaminated so workers can search for the source of the radiation.

The latest radiation detection occurred as workers were checking all 300 tanks that have similar structures to the one from which contaminated water leaked, which feature steel shafts connected by steel bolts instead of being welded together.

The tanks were installed to hold the vast amount of radioactive water that is being generated in cooling the plant's crippled reactors.

THE ASAHI SHIMBUN
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Technicians work to address leaks from a tank storing highly radioactive water at the wrekced Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant on Aug. 20. (Hiroshi Kawai)

Technicians work to address leaks from a tank storing highly radioactive water at the wrekced Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant on Aug. 20. (Hiroshi Kawai)

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  • Technicians work to address leaks from a tank storing highly radioactive water at the wrekced Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant on Aug. 20. (Hiroshi Kawai)

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