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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Radiation "10 Million Times Normal" Or was it?

March 27th, 2011 6:41AM CST
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It is hard to know what to believe. TEPCO's history of dishonesty and increasingly contradictory releases of information do not help us parse the situation.

UPDATE 8:34AM CST from AP via Yahoo:
"Emergency workers struggling to pump contaminated water from Japan's stricken nuclear complex fled from one of the troubled reactors Sunday after reporting a huge increase in radioactivity — a spike that officials later apologetically said was inaccurate.
The apology came after employees fled the complex's Unit 2 reactor when a reading showed radiation levels had reached 10 million times higher than normal in the reactor's cooling system. Officials said they were so high that the worker taking the measurements had withdrawn before taking a second reading.
On Sunday night, though, plant operators said that while the water was contaminated with radiation, the extremely high reading was a mistake.
"The number is not credible," said Tokyo Electric Power Co. spokesman Takashi Kurita. "We are very sorry."
He said officials were taking another sample to get accurate levels, but did not know when the results would be announced."

ORIGINAL POST - As most experts and advocates for "the peaceful atom" continue to assure us that there is no substatntial threat beyond Fukushima, this is being reported by Channel 4:

"Radiation in the water of the Number 2 reactor was measured at more than 1,000 millisieverts an hour, the highest reading since the massive earthquake and tsunami in Japan on March 11.
Officials said there was 10 million times the amount of radioactive iodine than is normal in the reactor at Fukushima, but noted the substance had a half-life of less than an hour, meaning it would disappear within a day.
The latest radiation scare is confined to inside the reactor. Radiation levels in the air beyond the evacuation zone and in Tokyo have been in normal ranges.
The Japanese government said that, overall, the situation was unchanged at the plant which lies 240 km (150 miles) north of Tokyo, even if there were hitches from time to time.
"We did expect to run into unforeseen difficulties, and this accumulation of high radioactivity water is one such example," Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano told a news briefing.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has warned the nuclear emergency could go on for weeks, if not months."
TOKYO (AP) reports: "There's been a huge jump in radioactivity in water at one unit of Japan's tsunami-crippled nuclear plant. The water has radiation levels 10 million times the norm and the air in the same unit is hot too -- four times the safety limit. It's a major setback to efforts to control and cool the leaking complex."

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