Japan live blog: Radiation levels spike near damaged nuclear plant
A rescue team looks for bodies among destroyed houses and debris in the tsunami-damaged town of Otsuchi in Iwate prefecture on March 26.
March 27th, 2011
09:19 AM ET

Japan live blog: Radiation levels spike near damaged nuclear plant

A magnitude 9.0 earthquake hit northern Japan on March 11, triggering tsunamis that caused widespread devastation and crippled a nuclear power plant. Are you in an affected area? Send an iReport. Read the full report on the quake's aftermath and check out our interactive explainer on Japan's damaged nuclear reactors.

[9:16 a.m. ET Sunday, 10:17 p.m. Sunday in Tokyo] Tokyo Electric says it is re-checking its results for a form of radioactive iodine in water from the No. 2 reactor's turbine building at Fukushima Daiichi after Japan's nuclear safety agency questioned extremely high figures released earlier Sunday.

[1:30 a.m. ET Sunday, 2:30 p.m. Sunday in Tokyo] Radiation levels in pooled water tested in the No. 2 nuclear reactor's turbine building at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant are 10 million times normal, a power company official said Sunday. Japan's nuclear and industrial safety agency reports the surface water showed 1,000 millisieverts of radiation. By comparison, an individual in a developed country is naturally exposed to 3 millisieverts per year, though Japan's health ministry has set a 250 millisievert per year cumulative limit before workers must leave the plant. One person was working in and around the No. 2 reactor when the test result became known, according to an official with the Tokyo Electric Power Company, which runs the plant. That individual subsequently left, and work there has stopped until the government signs off on the power company's plan to address the issue.

The process to start removing pooled water from that building had been set for late Sunday morning, Hidehiko Nishiyama, an official with Japan's nuclear safety agency, previously told reporters.

[1 a.m. ET Sunday, 2  p.m. Sunday in Tokyo] Radiation levels in pooled water tested in the No. 2 nuclear reactor's turbine building at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant are 10 million times normal, a power company official said Sunday.

Japan's nuclear and industrial safety agency reports the surface water showed 1,000 millisieverts of radiation. By comparison, an individual in a developed country is naturally exposed to 3 millisieverts per year, though Japan's health ministry has set a 250 millisievert per year cumulative limit before workers must leave the plant.

One person was working in and around the No. 2 reactor when the test result became known, according to an official with the Tokyo Electric Power Company, which runs the plant. That individual subsequently left, and work there has stopped until the government signs off on the power company's plan to address the issue.

The process to start removing pooled water from that building had been set for late Sunday morning, Hidehiko Nishiyama, an official with Japan's nuclear safety agency, previously told reporters.

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Filed under: 2011 tsunami • Japan
soundoff (135 Responses)
  1. david s

    @ JAZZ7 I don't want 2 be one ! But you are right all guys are at some point or another!Just some more than others!LOL

    March 28, 2011 at 9:55 am | Report abuse |
  2. david s

    Guess Im the only bloger out there this morning!

    March 28, 2011 at 10:05 am | Report abuse |
  3. david s

    Well about time to get to work and stop play'n on my ph. later ya'll

    March 28, 2011 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
  4. Christina333

    Does anyone know exactly how long it takes to cool a reactor core down. Just curious.

    March 28, 2011 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse |
  5. jojo

    boring!

    March 28, 2011 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
  6. jojo

    @Christina 333 How long this might take? Nobody knows.The most likely scenario is a long,drawn-out fight,with incremental progress interrupted by emergency cooling measures and spikes in radioactivity.Once the pumps and the residual heat removal systems are running,it would take only a couple of days to bring the reactors to a cold shut down.But engineers are literally working in the dark in most cases.Lights have only recently come on in the control room,but electrically powered monitors and gauges the workers eyes and ears inside the reactors are still off.Radiation readings outside the reactors are still taken via a moving car,because the monitoring post are not powered.Temperature and pressure readings from backup systems are all that workers have to "see"to what is going on in the reactors.Workers remain hampered by broken pipes,debris,flooded equipment and a scarcity of replacement pumps.Work has also been interrupted by hosing-cooling operations to lower rising temperatures in the reactor cores and spent fuel pools and spikes in the radioactivity,as well as an occasional fire and radiation injuries. So in short you probally know as much as we do!

    March 28, 2011 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
  7. jojo aka david s

    Its my new name till jazz7 can give me a good adopted one!

    March 28, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Tv

    Get tepco outta there firstly. Secondly, international effort has to take over as this is bad worldwide if it continues. Thirdly, get massive amounts of ice and snow and start throwing it straight on the nuclear plant just as they did with salt water. Once the ice and snow cools the reactors just bury it with cement. That's it!

    March 28, 2011 at 4:17 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Tv

    SNOW and ICE will cool down the reactors and than cement it to bury it!

    March 28, 2011 at 4:32 pm | Report abuse |
  10. jojo aka david s

    @tv How would you go about get'n that much snow and ice in there?Air drops from above would more than likely cause more damage! I know it realy is a bad problem though

    March 28, 2011 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
  11. jojo aka david s

    How about sending all the people who had the idea of building these things,and all who have permits for ones yet to be built in there to do the dirty work! Or we could just get mike rowe;^}

    March 28, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Report abuse |
  12. jojo aka david s

    Realy though it needs to be fix but fast and thats were the problem is I wouldn't be suprized to see it take a month at best and maybe more just to get a good handle on it.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:37 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Tv

    Snow and ice will cool down the reactors and than cement it

    March 28, 2011 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse |
  14. jojo aka david s

    who knows

    March 28, 2011 at 7:24 pm | Report abuse |
  15. ole lady

    This problem unfortunately doesn't have a quick fix. Radiation causes cancer and they radiate the body to kill the cancer. I have cancer. There are a lot of peeps besides me already dying from cancer. Just sad to look at my children and grandchildren knowing they will be fighting this same battle.

    March 28, 2011 at 10:52 pm | Report abuse |
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