As if a 9pt Earthquake with endless after shocks weren't enough, a Tsunami that wiped out 200 miles of coastline communities and three huge explosions at the Nuclear Complex weren't enough, now horrific fires have broken out in the spent fuel rod storage "ponds".
NPR has the story on the latest episode.
The credibility of officials in Japan and elsewhere is becoming stretched to the breaking point. The Tokyo Electric Power Plant officials are admitting that there IS a danger of radiation exposure for people within the near range of the damaged plant. A No-Fly Zone has been declared over the site to prevent aircraft from bringing radiation contamination back to their destinations.
Fifty brave workers are staying on site while 800 others have left the site.
The Union of Concerned Scientists has been a clarion voice of reason in the midst on seemingly endless denial of all government officials. They have been speaking out in the last few days and
warning that this incident is a huge wake-up call, on the recent rush towards a "nuclear renaissance" that has been pushed in the last few years.
40 Years of Doubts About Mark I Containment
Union of Concerned Scientists graphic on
how the reactors are constructed
183 degrees (F). This is twice the safe level.
A new fire broke out Wednesday in an already fire-damaged reactor at a crippled nuclear power plant in Fukushima, Japan.Tokyo Electric Power Co. spokesman Hajimi Motujuku says the blaze erupted early Wednesday in the outer housing of the reactor's containment vessel. Fire fighters are trying to put out the flames. Japan's nuclear safety agency also confirmed the fire, whose cause was not immediately known.
It is the second fire to break out at the plant's reactor No. 4 in as many days. The first occurred Tuesday morning near a pool where spent fuel rods are left to cool. That fire and an apparent explosion damaged the reactor's roof, and there are concerns that the spent fuel rods are overheating.
Desperate plant operators are considering dramatic plans to stave off a meltdown in the reactor, including dumping water on it by helicopter. But plant operators are worried that the water wouldn't reach the fuel rods.
According to NHK television, officials at Tokyo Electric Power Co. decided a hole in the roof of the reactor was "dozens of meters" from the swimming-pool-like chamber where the spent fuel rods are overheating. So a helicopter dump, similar to putting out a forest fire, probably wouldn't reach the pool.
TEPCO, which operates the Fukushima power plant, is still considering the use of high-pressure fire hoses to spray cooling water into the spent-fuel pool.