Japan steps up efforts to cool nuclear plant

Helicopters douse Fukushima Daiichi plant with seawater

Japan’s military Chinook helicopters and a water cannon doused the Fukishima Daiichi plant reactors with tonnes of seawater on Thursday in an attempt to prevent fuel rods from melting. Four loads were dumped by aircraft before they were forced to leave the area due to radiation exposure, but given high winds it was difficult to know whether the water dumps were hitting the target buildings. Japan has asked the U.S. to fly a drone over the site to assess the situation on the ground. As a result of the nuclear crisis, China has said it will suspend its approval for new nuclear sites. The confirmed death toll from the earthquake and subsequent tsunami has now surpassed 5,400 people, with about 9,500 still missing. Around 380,000 people are living in temporary shelters.

BBC News

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