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information about Fukushima published in English in Japanese media info publiée en anglais dans la presse japonaise

First flight over Fukushima Daiichi

February 26, 2012

New aerial view of Fukushima plant



An NHK helicopter has flown near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant for the first time since the accident last March.

The footage shows reactor buildings with their structures exposed by hydrogen explosions.

No one can be seen in the towns in the no-entry zones around the plant.

The land ministry scaled back the no-fly zone on Saturday from a 20-kilometer radius to 3 kilometers. It calculated that the aerial radioactive readings around the plant had dropped to a safe level.

NHK's helicopter flew around 4 kilometers from the plant at an altitude of some 700 meters on Sunday for the first time since the accident.

The aerial footage shows that the No. 3 reactor building has been distorted by a hydrogen explosion.

The yellow cover of the nuclear containment vessel has been exposed in the No. 4 reactor building, where the walls were ripped out by another explosion. A person in a yellow worksuit is walking on the 5th story.

At a port used by the plant, some 10 workers in white protective suits are working on a crane vessel to cover the seabed with cement and clay to stop the spread of radioactive substances.

About 1,000 gray and blue steel tanks to store contaminated water can be seen in the western part of the plant compound.

There are no signs of life in the no-entry zone that covers a 20-kilometer radius around the plant.

Destroyed buildings and boats washed ashore by the tsunami remain untouched near Ukedo port in Namie Town, to the north of the plant.


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