Monday, January 16, 2012

Radioactive gravel likely shipped to over 200 companies, Japan

Radioactive gravel thought responsible for high radiation readings in a new apartment complex in Nihonmatsu, Fukushima Prefecture, was likely shipped to over 200 companies, making its way into apartments, bridges, and possibly temporary homes for evacuees, according to government investigators.

The gravel was kept in a part of the town of Namie, in an area near the disaster-hit Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant. From the time the nuclear disaster began to the establishment of the area as an evacuation zone on April 22, the company owning the gravel had shipped 5,200 metric tons of it to 19 companies, according to national and local government sources.

Two of the receiving companies were ready-mix concrete companies and the rest were construction companies. However, the gravel was then reportedly sent on to over 200 other companies, where it was used in building materials.

On Jan. 16, Fukushima Prefectural Government officials agreed at a meeting to work to help move residents from the homes affected by the radioactive gravel, investigate the source of the contamination, and check for other places where contaminated building materials may have been used. Read More