Japan’s nuclear alarm doesn’t ring in the UK

As Japan’s nuclear problems appear to snowball, the Health and Safety Executive are remaining tight-lipped over the implications facing the British nuclear industry. Japanese engineers are to release more than […]

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By Tom Gibson

As Japan’s nuclear problems appear to snowball, the Health and Safety Executive are remaining tight-lipped over the implications facing the British nuclear industry.

Japanese engineers are to release more than 10,000 tonnes of contaminated water in the Fukushima reactor to free up space for water that is more contaminated. A dye has been put into the water to help track the radiation in the Pacific.

The majority of the UK’s nuclear plants lie on the coast and some worry an accident at one could lead to a similar situation, which would lead to the spread of radiation.

Currently, Mike Weightman, the Chief Nuclear inspector of the HSE is drafting a report of the implications of Fukushima.

The HSE said: “We have robust nuclear regulatory standards in the UK, but we must assess the implications of the unprecedented events in Japan and establish if lessons are to be learned”.

An interim statement is expected in mid-May, with the full report due by September.

Radiation levels in the sea around Fukushima are said to be 4000 times the legal limit.