Typhoon and earthquake strike Fukushima
Two and a half years ago, the Fukushima Daiichi power facility was knocked out by a tsunami and earthquake. Myriad troubles ensued. Then this week it was hit by a typhoon, flooding, and another earthquake. Can’t a nuclear plant catch a break?
On Monday, Typhoon Man-yi smacked into Japan, causing flooding in some parts of the country, and new troubles at Fukushima. From Agence France-Presse:
The operator of the leaking Fukushima nuclear plant said Tuesday that it dumped more than 1,000 tons of polluted water into the sea after a typhoon raked the facility. …
The rain … lashed near the broken plant run by Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO), swamping enclosure walls around clusters of water tanks containing toxic water that was used to cool broken reactors.
Then, early Friday morning, the Fukushima Prefecture was rocked by a 5.3 magnitude earthquake. Fortunately, it doesn’t seem to have done any additional damage to the already crippled plant. From the AP:
The U.S. Geological Survey says the quake struck early Friday at a depth of about 13 miles under Fukushima Prefecture and about 110 miles northeast of Tokyo. …
The Japanese news agency Kyodo News reported that the plant’s operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co., observed no abnormality in radiation or equipment after the quake.
Even before this latest earthquake, Japan’s government was clearly fed up with the perpetually beleaguered nuclear facility. “Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday ordered TEPCO to scrap all six reactors at the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant and concentrate on tackling pressing issues like leaks of radioactive water,” the AP reports.