New radiation spike found near Fukushima nuclear plant water tanks

Reuters News
Posted: Sep 02, 2013 8:54 AM

TOKYO (Reuters) - Tokyo Electric Power Co, the operator of the wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant, said on Monday that a patrol of workers had found a new area of high radiation near tanks used to store contaminated water.

The latest revelation in a statement by Tokyo Electric late on Monday comes a day before Japan's government is set to announce new steps to address deep-seated problems in controlling the spread of radiated water at Fukushima and criticism that the utility has bungled the response to the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl.

Tokyo Electric said it had found a radiation reading above 100 millisieverts per hour on the ground near a water storage tank. The latest hot spot is in a different area than a storage tank that was found to have leaked 300 metric tons of radioactive water in August.

Tokyo Electric said in a statement that there was no sign of a water leak around the newly discovered area of high radiation. The utility could not give a precise reading for the level of radiation since workers were using instruments that only recorded radiation up to 100 millisieverts.

Japanese nuclear workers are limited to a cumulative exposure of 100 millisieverts over five years.

(Reporting By Kevin Krolicki; Editing by Edmund Klamann)