FUKUSHIMA--All elementary schools run by Fukushima city are holding outdoor sports festivals this year, many for the first time since the accident at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.
Like many neighboring schools, Mikawadai Elementary School in Fukushima city was forced to cancel its event last year because of radiation levels in its school grounds of 2 microsieverts per hour. Other schools had to move their events indoors.
But decontamination work at Mikawadai has brought radiation down to 0.15 microsievert per hour, allowing its festival to go ahead on a clear day on May 12. The school decided on a half-day format instead of the usual full day to cut the radiation exposure of the children.
Kaito Oda, a sixth-grader, ran in a 150-meter sprint, the first event in the program.
“I was frustrated that there was no athletic meet last year,” Oda said. “I want to enjoy twice as much this year.”
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