Schools in Japan disaster zone remove radiation-tainted soil
Schools in north-eastern Japan started Wednesday to remove radiation-contaminated soil from their playgrounds, DPA reported.
The city of Koriyama in Fukushima prefecture was the first municipality to start getting rid of the contaminated topsoil since the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant was crippled by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, Jiji Press reported. The plant as been leaking radioactive substances ever since.
Work to remove about 3 centimetres of topsoil was carried out Wednesday at an elementary school and a nursery located about 50 kilometres west of the troubled plant. The soil will be transported to the city's landfill.
The local government implements the safety measure if radiation levels at a point 1 centimetre above ground reach 3.8 microsievert per hour for elementary and junior high schools, and 3 microsievert for nurseries.
Fifteen elementary and junior high schools and 13 nursery schools are subject to the measure, aimed at easing concerns among parents although the current radiation levels are unlikely cause major harm to children, an unnamed local official was quoted by Jiji was saying.