25 Février 2015
February 25, 2015
Feb. 25, 2015 - Updated 08:05 UTC+1
Japan's nuclear regulator has demanded that the operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant thoroughly investigate a recent leak of radioactive drainage water that may have entered the sea.
The Nuclear Regulation Authority on Wednesday heard a report on the incident saying levels of beta ray-emitting substances rose sharply in a drainage channel at the plant on Sunday. It also said some of the contaminated water likely spilled into the plant's port facing the Pacific Ocean.
Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, has been unable to determine why the radioactivity levels spiked.
Authority Chairman Shunichi Tanaka criticized TEPCO for leaving the channel's gate to the port open for as long as 90 minutes after an alarm went off.
Tanaka said TEPCO might not have had a plan to follow after detection of radiation spikes. He said the utility should have in place a system to automatically shut the water gate in case of irregularity.
On Tuesday, Tokyo Electric reported another radioactive water leak. The firm said contaminated rainwater that had accumulated on the roof of the plant's No. 2 reactor building leaked into the sea outside the port through another drainage channel.