Monday, July 18, 2011

#Fukushima I Nuke Plant: Reactor 3 Turbine Bldg Roof Repair Resulted in High Radiation for Carbon Workers

Another "why are they doing this?" moment for me. TEPCO is repairing the roof of Reactor 3's turbine building in preparation for the Typhoon No.6 so that the rainwater wouldn't go inside the turbine building.

Well, Reactors 1, 3, and 4 don't even have roofs on the reactor building. What difference would plugging the holes in the Reactor 3 turbine building make?

For this meaningless effort, 2 of the 4 human workers who installed the metal plate over the large, oblong hole on the roof received radiation exceeding 10 millisieverts. That's extremely high, considering the work was done outside, not inside the building, though there's no information as to how long the workers took to complete the task.

Now why would the rooftop be so radioactive for this particular turbine building? The holes look as if something heavy fell through the roof.

Only regional newspapers like Hokkaido Shinbun even had the radiation numbers for the workers. No such information in the national papers like Yomiuri and Asahi.

From Hokkaido Shinbun (7/18/2011):


TEPCO continued the work on July 18 to cover the holes on the roof of Reactor 3's turbine building with metal plates in preparation for the approaching Typhoon No.6. The workers finished covering the 14-meter diameter oblong hole, and will plug a 5-meter diameter hole and vents that lost the lids in the accident by July 19.


Of the 4 workers who did the work on the roof, two received radiation exceeding the planned 10 millisieverts. One received 12 millisieverts, the other 11 millisieverts. TEPCO explained the reason as "the work taking longer than expected".


In Reactor 3's turbine building, TEPCO plans to plug two holes with sandbags. (The holes used to have pipes that collected rainwater from the roof.)


Anonymous said...

According to NHK the work to install the roof took 6h in total. Even if we would assume that these two workers have been on the roof during the whole time (probably much shorter), the radiation on the roof would be at least 12 mSv / 6h = 2mSv/h.

My personal guess is, that the roof is still littered with the highly radioactive material (concrete parts of the roof and other structures from the explosion 4 months ago) that hampered initial work around reactor 3. In the meantime, these bits and pieces have been (partially) collected from the ground, but not from the roofs of the turbine buildings. Well, the typhoon will help to wash some of that material off the roof into the ocean or into the ground... slowly soaking through to the ground water.

I guess, people should be thankful that soon, they will have such 'healthy' ground water.... maybe one day, TEPCO can charge them extra for this 'health benefit'.

Anonymous said...

The roof is also probably radioactive from condensation of Caesium, etc from the radioactive steam being given off from the reactor buildings. Much of which would be in water-soluble form. So TEPCO are probably not so much worried about plain rainwater falling into the turbine hall, but highly radioactive runoff water from the roof.
I'd guess the turbine halls are used as staging areas for entry to the reactor buildings. So more radiation there makes things even more difficult.


netudiant said...

Surely this work is driven by the need to keep the water level in the plant down.
People would be very unhappy to see this hugely contaminated site overflow. Patching some of the biggest leak paths into the site seems appropriate given an oncoming typhoon.
If it works reasonably, even if not 100%,(that would be doubtful as the parches are pretty large and it is not easy to get a watertight seal on a big surface,) the effort was a worthwhile step.
Separately, anonymous makes a good point about the roof being representative of the uncleaned environment, with debris all over. It is less certain that the typhoon will wash much more away, as the rainy season just ended probably took out most of the small stuff.
Is there any effort to capture the site runoff at present or does it just get drained to the harbor basin?

Anonymous said...

I agree - its probably a good thing that Tepco is at least trying to stop water getting into places where there is already a huge amount of contaminated water, even if it means some workers get 12 millisieverts.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

@netudiant, early on in the crisis, someone left a comment on my blog about the site runoff. I'm looking for that comment. If I remember right, the person said the runoff seems to be draining into the ocean. Only once the runoff was mentioned by TEPCO in March, around the time 2 workers got irradiated in the turbine building water in Reactor 3.

Anonymous said...

why not these three guys jump into the reactor and enjoy the glowing super spa,, enjoy the nice bath ..... together with tepco officials ,,,, warm bath...

Gonzo said...

For those who have not heard about Jim Stone's thesis about how the Fukushima reactors were crippled, here's the link:

Anonymous said...

Robbie001 sez:

@ Gonzo

Yes we know all about this racist retard Jim Stoned he couldn't think his way out of a wet paper sack. Read the comments in this link the blog owner is tired of of Jim "Stoned out of his mind" and so are most of the readers here. This mental midget's original "thesis" (better known as moronic lunatic ravings) was torn to shreds so the fool tried to polish his turd but BS is BS regardless of how "shiny" it is.

Anonymous said...

If you watch the documentary "Battle of Chernobyl" you will find the answers to some of these questions. That documentary is really frightening especially in light of what is happening in Fukushima!

katz said...

What makes me sick about the Japanese is that when Chernobyl happened, the Russians brought out half a million men, and covered it up w/in three months. The Japanese act like rabbits, won't do anything to help themselves, and have a few workers out there, but nothing like half a million strong. plus, they wont ask for help, and continue to lie to the people about the radiation. If the Japanese are that stupid, sobeit. They are also cowards, if they sent in their elders to do it, and that really is sick.
Don't expect me to feel sorry for them. The strong will survive, and apparently, if the Japanese are not at war w their neighbors, they are soft as kittens and never peep or worry about their kids. I'd have already gotten my kids out of there. Japan is a total loss. there is no way around it. They must know it, bc they continue to mess around ruining the entire Pacific ocean, and the northern hemisphere, and everyone allows them to do it. If I were China, I would have already gone in there and taken over Fugishima and done the work that needs doing, and given them a big bill.

risa said...

I am inclined to think that in #3's blow-up, we see part of the SPF and crane going off to the left, and the reactor lid, like a frisbee, heading for the turbine building. Wouldn't a bunch of MOX gone in there with it? Which might explain the urgency of the high-risk roofing job.

Anonymous said...

"If I remember right, the person said the runoff seems to be draining into the ocean. "

If TEPCO has never mentioned collecting runoff, it is certainly draining into the ocean.

Since it is not pooling on site outside of the buildings, the only "certainty" is the rain will do what it will with what it comes into contact with. And that implies water-soluble isotopes are still entering the ocean.

Larger, "small" runoff effects are speculations.

Anonymous said...

@ Areva 10:38

Is this what you're looking for?

BlArthurHu said...

There is one picture collection off the japan earthquake scribble group that theorizes the missing fuel platform which is no longer over the spent fuel pool just about matches the size of the hole in the roof, and one of the pieces of debris seen falling from the cloud. If the workers had brought cameras to look down through the hole, they would have been able to spot the platform wreckage, but of course, Tepco almost certainly neglected to gather such pictures. There should be zero radiation in the turbine building after the steam is shut off.

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