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Japan:Radiation exposure for 2 workers nears limit +

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Laaska News April 30,2011

Two workers at the crisis-hit Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant have been found to have been exposed to radiation levels close to legal yearly limit.

Late last month, the plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Company measured the internal radiation exposure of the workers whose external exposure exceeded 100 millisieverts.

It says it found that the amount of internal and external radiation that 2 of its employees had been exposed to exceeded 200 millisieverts. The reading for one of the men reached 240.8 millisieverts.

The health ministry recently raised the legal radiation limit that workers can be exposed to in an emergency from 100 to 250 millisieverts.
On March 24th the 2 workers, without wearing proper protective gear, stood in highly radioactive water while working in the basement of the Number 3 reactor building.

The utility says it took about one month to measure their internal exposure levels.

TEPCO says workers are transferred out of the Fukushima plant once their external exposure reaches 150 millisieverts, and that 8 workers in total have been relocated.

The utility says it will manage the situation with utmost attention to make sure that the workers are never exposed to radiation levels above the legal limit.

TEPCO to accelerate transfer of radioactive water

The operator of the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says it plans to speed up the removal of highly radioactive water from an underground tunnel connected to the No. 2 reactor building by doubling the number of pumps.

Huge amounts of highly radioactive water are hampering efforts to restore cooling functions to the plant’s reactors.

Tokyo Electric Power Company is using a single pump to transfer radioactive water from the No. 2 reactor building to a waste processing facility. It plans to start using 2 pumps on Saturday. It stopped the transfer for a while on Friday to check the facility and hoses for leaks.

TEPCO has pumped 2,400 tons of radioactive water out of the tunnel since April 19th. It hopes to double the flow to 20 tons per hour so as to transfer a total of 10,000 tons by mid-May.

TEPCO is also preparing to pump radioactive water out of an underground tunnel connected to the No. 3 reactor building. It’s connecting hoses between the tunnel and the waste processing facility.

The company is also considering burying a tank in the ground to store radioactive water in case the pumping does not go smoothly.

NHK.

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