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Power failure at Fukushima threatens cooling system

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Power failure at Fukushima threatens cooling system


Japan’s tsunami-damaged Fukushima nuclear plant has suffered a power failure affecting some of the pools of water used to cool radioactive fuel rods.

The loss of electricity began on Monday night. For now, the situation is not deemed to dangerous, however if electricity is not restored, the temperature in one of the pools could rise to unsafe levels in four days.

“In the worst case scenario, we have a system in place to put water into the pools, so we have a double strategy: we have time to find a solution before the temperature gets out of hand and then also the ability to inject water into the pools if needed,” said Masayuki Ono, spokesman for owners of the plant Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco).

Tepco has been trying to repair the plant since the earthquake and tsunami of March 2011. At the time, water reached boiling point and evaporated, leaving fuel rods exposed to the air and releasing radiation.

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