Heavy rains overflow barriers surrounding Fukushima water tanks

Heavy rains overflow barriers surrounding Fukushima water tanks

Water has overflowed at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) is attempting to discern the quality of the water and possible radioactive substances which could have been spilled.

  TEPCO announced on Monday that the water overflowed in 12 areas  of the plant.

  Heavy rains caused water to flow over the barriers of an  artificial embankment which surrounds a dozen tanks of  radioactive water at the plant. TEPCO reported that liquid  containing a source of beta radiation was found beyond the  levees.  
  The company said the incident was “due to heavy rain in the  Tohoku region.” Company specialists are attempting to  identify the amount of leaked water and the radiation levels  present in the liquid.  
  Radioactivity levels in a well near a storage tank at the  Fukushima nuclear power plant have risen immensely, the plant’s  operator earlier reported, fueling ongoing concern about the  impact of radiation on the surrounding environment.  
  Last Wednesday, heavy rains brought with Typhoon Wipha caused  reservoirs for collecting rainwater to overflow. The natural  disaster was described by weather forecasters as the strongest in  a decade, leaving at least 17 people dead and 50 others missing  in its wake.  
  Workers at the Fukushima plant had to pump rainwater out of  protective containers surrounding approximately 1,000 tanks  holding radioactive water. It is thought that the heavy rains  lifted contaminated soil.  

DC crowd pushes through barriers to WWII Memorial

DC crowd pushes through barriers to WWII Memorial

A crowd converged on the World War II Memorial on the National Mall on Sunday, pushing past barriers to protest the memorial’s closing under the government shutdown.

Republican Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Mike Lee of Utah, along with former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, were part of the demonstrators.

Budget battle: Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaks at a rally in front of the World War II Memorial on Sunday, Oct. 13, in Washington.

AP Photo: Alex Brandon

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaks at a rally in front of the World War II Memorial on Sunday, Oct. 13, in Washington.

Cruz and Lee are among the tea party-backed lawmakers who refused to keep the government operating unless President Barack Obama agreed to defund the nation’s health care overhaul.

“Let me ask a simple question,” Cruz told the crowd of hundreds that gathered beginning at 9 a.m. “Why is the federal government spending money to erect barricades to keep veterans out of this memorial?”

Black metal barricades have lined the front of the memorial since the government closed Oct. 1. That’s when more than 300 National Park Service workers who staff and maintain the National Mall were furloughed.

As the crowd entered the memorial plaza, they chanted “Tear down these walls” and “You work for us.” They sang “God bless America” and other songs.

“Our vets have proven that they have not been timid, so we will not be timid in calling out any who would use our military, our vets, as pawns in a political game,” Palin told the crowd.