Leaks plague cleanup efforts at damaged Japanese nuclear plant

April 12, 2013 at 4:42 PM
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TOKYO, April 12 (UPI) -- Escaping radioactive water plagued efforts to transfer water from a leaking reservoir at Japan's damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant, the plant operator says.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. said about 6 gallons of radioactive water apparently leaked from a joint between a pipe and a pump being used to move water from the problematic sunken No. 3 reservoir to another reservoir, JiJi Press reported Friday.

Tepco said it is working to move all radioactive water currently stored in the sunken reservoirs to above-ground tanks to stop contamination of the environment by the leaked water from the reservoirs.

Work to transfer water from reservoir No. 3 was halted after just 3 minutes when water leaked from the pipe-to-pump fitting and seeped into soil near the reservoir, Tepco officials said.

The No. 3 reservoir holds some 10,400 tons of water containing strontium and other radioactive materials, Tepco said.

Another two underground reservoirs damaged in the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami have also suffered leaks, the company said.

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