Workers enter Fukushima’s no.1 reactor for the first time since the earthquake and tsunami

May 5th, 2011 - 11:48 pm ICT by BNO News  

FUKUSHIMA, JAPAN (BNO NEWS) — Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) on Thursday informed that workers entered the no. 1 nuclear reactor building at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant for the first time since the devastating the earthquake and tsunami.

According to the Japan Today, the workers installed eight pipes connected to a ventilating device at an adjacent turbine building as part of the efforts to reduce the high level of radioactivity inside the building.

Thursday’s work was directed at preventing workers from suffering dangerous radiation exposure when they work on setting up a new cooling system at the Unit 1 reactor building.

On Tuesday, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) informed that the situation at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant remains very serious. The core damage for Units 1, 2 and 3 are of 55 percent, 35 percent and 33 percent respectively as of April 27.

On April 29, TEPCO used a remotely controlled robot to check the status inside the Unit 1 reactor building and radiation up to 49 millisieverts per hour was detected inside it.

Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant was severely damaged on March 11 when a 9.0-magnitude earthquake and a subsequent tsunami devastated the country. The disaster disabled the cooling systems of the plant, and radioactive elements leaked into the sea and were later found in water, air and food products in some parts of Japan.

At least 14,294 people were killed, while some 13,000 people remain missing. Japanese officials have called it the worst crisis since the end of World War II.

Japan has approved a 4 trillion yen ($48.89 billion) emergency budget to finance the early phase of reconstruction. In addition, the evacuation zone was expanded beyond the initial 20-kilometer (12.4-mile) radius surrounding the damaged plant.

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