Japan Makes Progress Stabilizing Nuclear Plant

Fukushima Dai-ichi gets some of its cooling functions back

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Mar 19, 2011 5:33 PM CDT

(Newser) – The latest news from Japan's Fukushima Dia-ichi plant has a rare note of optimism—tempered with plenty of don't-get-your-hopes-up-too-high sentiment. The biggest bright spot is that workers have apparently restored power to the cooling systems of two reactors, Units 5 and 6, reports the Wall Street Journal. Those units posed the least threat, but the development bodes well for making progress plant-wide, notes the LA Times.

In another good sign, radiation levels have dropped at the most worrisome reactor, Unit 3, amid constant dousing from fire hoses. “As of now, we cannot say anything definite, but we think we have succeeded in putting a certain level of water in Unit 3, and we think that it is in a certain stable situation,” said a government spokesman. “We have been able to prevent the situation from worsening ... but I believe we are reaching a big turning point.” Click to read about contamination showing up in the food supply.

Radiation scanning crews check each other's levels as they change their working shift at a screening center in Koriyama.
Radiation scanning crews check each other's levels as they change their working shift at a screening center in Koriyama.   (Getty Images)
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