Tepco: Fukushima Crisis Over in 6-9 Months

Plant operator outlines plans to shut down reactors
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 17, 2011 7:58 AM CDT
Tepco chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata bows at the end of a news conference at the company's headquarters in Tokyo, Sunday, April 17, 2011.   (Shuji Kajiyama)
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(Newser) – Tepco today laid out a plan to have the nuclear crisis at Fukushima Dai-ichi contained within six to nine months. "We sincerely apologize for causing troubles," said Chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata in unveiling the plan. "We are doing our utmost to prevent the crisis from further worsening." Tepco and government officials said some residents would be able to return home in that timeframe, reports the AP.

Tepco hopes to cut the radiation leaking in the first phase, then achieve a cold shutdown in the latter three to six months and temporarily cover the reactors. The company also unveiled its years-long plan to permanently decommission Fukushima Dai-ichi. Frustrated residents forced to evacuate were skeptical: "I don't believe a word they say," says one.

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