22 Août 2013
August 22, 2013
TEPCO checking tanks for leaks
Inspectors at the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear-power plant are checking for leaks in about 350 water-storage tanks.
Plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Company found Monday that one tank had leaked more than 300 tons of highly radioactive water.
They fear the contaminated water is seeping via a drainage system into the sea.
Personnel on Wednesday night finished transferring the remaining 700 tons of water to another tank.
They are now examining the tank to identify the source of the leak.
But they can only start a full investigation next week due to the high radiation level inside the tank.
So the TEPCO workers have turned their attention to about 350 tanks of the same kind. The tanks are made from steel plates bolted together rather than welded.
TEPCO operatives are carrying out visual inspections and measuring radiation levels around the tanks. They plan to finish the work as early as Friday.
Aug. 22, 2013 - Updated 06:54 UTC
Nuclear regulator urges checking all tanks
Japan's nuclear regulator has called for an immediate check of all water storage tanks at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant.
The head of the Nuclear Regulation Authority, Shunichi Tanaka, told a news conference on Wednesday that there are about 350 other tanks at the site structurally identical to the one which leaked 300 tons.
He said that if a leak occurs in one tank, it must be assumed that something similar will occur in others.
He said the operator of the plant, the government and the regulatory agency must all do their best to prevent the situation at the plant from getting any worse.
Regulator orders stricter watch on leaked tanks
Japan's nuclear regulator has ordered the operator of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant to step up measures to prevent more radioactive leaks.
Tokyo Electric Power Company said on Tuesday that about 300 tons of highly radioactive water had leaked from a storage tank in the plant compound.
The Nuclear Regulation Authority convened an emergency meeting on Wednesday evening to discuss the leaks.
Some experts at the meeting criticized TEPCO for leaving open valves at a barrier surrounding the tanks. Others said checks for leaks in the storage area needed to be more frequent.
Toyoshi Fuketa, a commissioner with the agency, said he doubts the current system is in any way capable of preventing further leakage.
The regulators instructed TEPCO to install water-level gauges to all tanks to warn of future leaks. They also demanded the operator consider storing the water elsewhere.
About 350 structurally-identical tanks have been built without welding, using steel plates and bolts, to temporarily store waste water from damaged reactors.
The panel members plan to inspect the tanks on Friday.