Tepco investigates new Fukushima leak

11 May 2011


UPDATE 1: 4.50pm, Leak stopped


A leak to sea from Fukushima Daiichi 3 was found today and stopped. Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco) is assessing what environmental effect, if any, the leak may have had.


Water was spotted leaking through power cable penetrations in concrete in a pit near to the sea wall at around 12.30pm today. It is not yet known if the water carried radioactive contamination, although Tepco reported that it had taken samples and was analysing them at the nearby Daini plant.



Leak to concrete pite from Fukushima Daiichi 3, May 2011
Water was certainly coming out, but where did it come from and was
it contaminated?



Injection of fresh water to the core of unit 3 continues and Tepco is preparing a longer term facility for this based on existing feedwater lines rather than fire fighting equipment. The company reported that it had 'inserted fabrics to the conduit line leading to the pit'. After that concrete was used to stop the leak by 6.45pm.


About one month ago at unit 2 it was found that injected water was somehow leaking through the reactor building and accumulating in the basement of the turbine hall. The route for this is not yet established, but having passed through the damaged reactor it had picked up significant quantities of radioactive material which it took to sea through a crack in a concrete pit.


Tepco was able to plug that leak and levels of radioactivity in the nearby sea have since decreased markedly, although they remain far above regulatory limits. The accumulated water is being pumped out of the building and into an on-site treatment facility so that recovery engineering can take place in the basement.


It is not yet known if the situation at unit 3 was a parallel to this. Tepco has been told by the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency to confirm any impact to the sea from the unit 3 leak, immediately make efforts to stop leakage and immediately report the route taken by the water.
Researched and written
by World Nuclear News