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Fukushima operator halts water decontamination system

Published on Mar 19, 2014 11:05 AM
Men wearing protective suits and masks working on storage tanks for radioactive water at the tsunami-crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant on March 10, 2014. TEPCO is struggling to handle a huge - and growing - volume of contaminated water at the plant. -- FILE PHOTO: AFP

TOKYO (AFP) - The operator of Japan's crippled Fukushima nuclear plant said on Wednesday it has temporarily shut down a decontamination system that scrubs radiation-tainted water used to cool damaged reactors.

Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO) said it had discovered a defect in its Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS) and switched it off on Tuesday for repairs.

It is not the first time the utility has shut down the system, which has been hit by a series of glitches since trial operations began a year ago.

"We don't know yet when we can resume operating the system as we have not detected the cause of the defect yet," a TEPCO spokeswoman said.

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