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

Koriyama - Hot spots in schools

 May 7, 2012
'Hot spots' detected at more than 20 schools in Koriyama



FUKUSHIMA, Japan (Kyodo) -- More than 20 schools in Koriyama city in Fukushima Prefecture, home to the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, have "hot spots" with high radiation levels on their premises, a civil group said Sunday.

The finding was based on municipal education board documents it obtained through an information disclosure request, it said.

The education board instructed elementary and junior high schools as well as nursery schools in January to check air radiation levels in side ditches, hedges and drains on their premises. Schoolyards and classrooms were excluded as the levels there have been regularly examined.

Reports submitted by each school in April showed at least 14 elementary and seven junior high as well as five nursery schools have hot spots where the cumulative annual radiation dose could reach 20 millisieverts, or more than 3.8 microsieverts per hour.

At the start of the new academic year in April, the education board lifted a restriction that had limited students to playing in schoolyards for less than three hours per day in the wake of the nuclear disaster last year.

Tokiko Noguchi, head of the civil group, told a press conference Sunday, "There are many spots in schools where radiation levels still remain high," calling on the education board to restore the restriction.

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