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Electricity line connected to one of the reactors

19 march 2011, 16:51
0
Fukushima nuclear plant being cooled with water @AFP
Fukushima nuclear plant being cooled with water @AFP
Engineers at a stricken nuclear plant in Japan have connected an electricity line to one of the reactors and are working to restore power for its cooling system, AFP reports referring to official source.

"The line itself was connected to the reactor No. 2 but electricity has not been restored yet," said a spokesman for the nuclear safety agency, Fumiaki Hayakawa.

"If the power is turned on without checks it may malfunction. They are checking the facility now. If no problem is found at the facility today, the power will resume as early as tomorrow (Sunday)."

Once power is back up, the radiation-suited Fukushima engineers hope they can get vital cooling systems online. In the meantime, they have been dumping water by hose and by air on the reactors to cool the fuel rods.

Given the extent of damage at the plant, it is unclear whether the cooling system will work even if power is restored, TEPCO officials say.

There are six reactors at the plant, which is located about 250 kilometers (155 miles) northeast of Tokyo and has already leaked radiation, prompting the government to order an evacuation within a 20-kilometer radius.

Reactors 1 and 2 usually share the same electricity line, so the cable could in theory restore power to both if the system still functions.

Four of the plant's six reactor units -- numbers one to four -- have been in danger of spewing dangerous amounts of radioactivity, following a series of hydrogen explosions and fires at buildings housing the troubled reactors.

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