mardi 20 août 2013

Largest ever tank leak fukushima

The operator of the disabled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says a leak of 300 tons of contaminated water from a tank there is the largest since the 2011 crisis.Tokyo Electric Power Company said on Tuesday that the water leaked from one of 11 meter-high tanks installed on the hill side of the plant's reactors, about 500 meters from the ocean.The tank belongs to a group of 26 surrounded by a 30-centimeter-high concrete barrier. Each is designed to hold 1,000 tons of water.Tokyo Electric officials say the tank leaked about 300 tons of water, but that most of it stayed inside the barrier.The tanks are made of steel sheets bolted together. But others with the same structure have leaked a number of times where the sheets are joined. The operator says workers check the bolts twice a day.The barrier did not work as expected, as pipes attached to it were left open to drain rainwater. The firm says it plans to review the method.Japan's Nuclear Regulation Authority has assessed the problem as a level 1 incident, the 2nd-lowest on an 8-point international scale.It has instructed the firm to quickly identify the cause and clean up soil that has absorbed water.  Aug. 20, 2013 - Updated 10:31

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