By Ronja Pilgaard
JAPAN, FUKUSHIMA – The troubled Fukushima Daiichi Power Plant in Japan has experienced yet another accident in a series of many. A leak of an estimated 100 tons of highly contaminated water was discovered by workers on patrol at around 11:25 p.m. local time on Wednesday. The owerflow is is believed to have been caused by by overfilling the tank.
To avoid further spillage the owner of the plant, Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), has set up barriers and installed robots to detect new leaks. TEPCO says, the tainted water flowed over a barrier securing the tank. The company does not think, that any of the water has reached the Pacific Ocean – 700 meters away.
”It is unlikely that the water, which leaked from a bolted tank reached the ocean, because there are no nearby waterways that flow towards the sea,” TEPCO says.
Instead TEPCO believes the water is being absorbed into the ground. The plant has shut off the inflow of water into the tank and the leaking has stopped, the owner of the plant told CNN.
A new scandal?
Since a tsunami in March 2011 hit the Northeastern coast of Japan – and the nuclear powerplant – the clean up after the Fukushima disaster has been affected by scandals. Last week it was revealed that TEPCO had held back reports of dangerously high radiation levels at the plant since September.
The leak discovered is vey poisonous. According to TEPCO, a person standing half a meter from the leak would have absorbed radioactive radiation five times the allowed amount for a worker on a nuclear power plant for and entire year.
Last year Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government vowed to step in to deal with the toxic water crisis at the plant that caused concern in Japan and abroad.
Largest since August
“We are deeply embarrassed that this sort of unacceptable event would occur after the many steps we have taken to improve the management of stored water,” said Zengo Aizawa, Director and Executive Vice President of TEPCO in a statement.
The leak reported is one of the largest since last August, where TEPCO reported that about 300 tons of radioactive water with very high levels of radioactive cesium had leaked from a tank.
The plant is situated 220 kilometers north of Tokyo, the capitol of Japan.