Japan: It may take months to stop radiation

China View – April 4, 2011

Japan’s Fukishima Daichi Nuclear Plant has been leaking radioactive material since the devastating earthquake struck the island country on march the 11th.

On Sunday, Japan’s government warned that it may take months to stop radiation leaking from the crippled nuclear plant, but added the situation is somewhat stabilized.

Attempts to stop radiation leakage have evolved into a protracted battle.

On Saturday, the Tokyo Electric Power Company found a crack in a concrete pit at its No. 2 reactor. That might be held accountable for spewing highly radioactive water into the ocean.

Engineers tried to block the crack by applying concrete, but it did not work.

On Sunday afternoon, they pinned their hopes on injecting polymer – a substance that can absorb enormous amounts of water and expand 50 times its original size, into a pipe that connects the pit to the rest of the system.

They also injected chemicals, sawdust and shredded newspaper.

But little significant relief was found after the measure.

Arai, Member, Parliament from Fukushima, said, “The crisis of the radiation leak will continue and take a while to be resolved. It is our first time to experience such a serious crisis and people are in great panic. The key point lies in a quick resolution or control of the nuclear crisis while calming the public.”

But engineers are not giving up on the move to plug the leak, saying they should know by Monday whether it will really work.

For residents still living not far away from the Fukushima plant, their fight against the radiation is a daily struggle.

The long and difficult nature of the recovery is making many of them think about relocation.

Fukushima Resident, said, “Many people are scared of the danger of radiation and have chosen to leave. There are some people choosing to stay here. Even in the same family, opinions are divided on the point.”

Japan’s Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency says the next few months will be crucial. After the first step of stemming the leak of radioactive water, engineers will then attempt to restore cooling systems.

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