26 Mar '11, 6am

Radiation spike in sea near Japan nuclear plant

Radiation spike in sea near Japan nuclear plant

SENDAI, Japan: Radiation levels have jumped 10-fold in days in seawater near Japan's tsunami-hit nuclear plant, officials said Saturday, as workers battled to stabilise the crippled power station. Drinking a half-litre (20-ounce) bottle of similarly contaminated fresh water would expose a person to their annual safe dose, said an official who however ruled out an immediate threat to aquatic life and seafood safety. The iodine-131 level in the Pacific Ocean waters just off the Fukushima plant was 1,250 times above the legal limit -- compared with readings of 126 times higher taken on Tuesday, and 145 higher on Thursday. "This is a relatively high level," nuclear safety agency official Hidehiko Nishiyama said in a televised press conference on the test results from Friday released by plant operator the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO). Assessing the likely impact on aqua...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific/vi...

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