New 80,000 Gallon Highly Radioactive Leak Moves Fukushima Closer To Major Crisis

TEPCO Began To Suspect A Problem When They Noticed The Big Radioactive PuddleMore trouble at Fukushima

The kind of solution Curley Mo and Larry might come up with: plastic tarps and sandbags in place to contain a leak that has already seeped into the soil
In the latest in a series of disasters at the crippled Daiichi nuclear power plant in Fukushima, Japan, a storage tank has leaked 80,000 gallons of highly radioactive water onto and into the ground around it. This incident is separate and potentially more lethal than the larger scale problem involving the radioactive cooling water generated every day, and for which storage capacity is rapidly running out (see our our previous story). This water is significantly more contaminated than the cooling water that is now leaking into the ocean at an undetermined rate. It’s so contaminated, that if a person stood next to the radioactive water for a ten hours, they would – according to the published reports – develop radiation sickness and experience a drop in white blood cells. So our advice to you is carry a Gieger counter and keep moving.After 10 hours, a worker in near proximity to the leak would develop radiation sickness with symptoms including nausea and a drop in white blood cells.

According to the reports, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) has not quite determined where the water leaked to, or what caused it to leak, but about a third of the water in the 250,000 gallon tank has gone missing and there is a large puddle of radioactive water around the base of the tank. Hence, the tarps and stuff. The tank is about two years old, and is one of about 1,000 similar units located about 500 feet from the Sea of Japan. The electric utility, known for a unique combination of arrogance and incompetence, planned on the tanks lasting for five years. But then again, they also thought the underground barrier they built would stop the contaminated groundwater from flowing into the sea. But apparently, the water went around it. ‘Cause it’s water.

A less spectacular aspect of the Fukushima disaster – a combo platter of natural and man made catastrophes – is the fact that about 70,000 former residents of the contaminated region are never going home again. Visit the CatMap Fukushima web page for more.

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