Feeds

Fukushima switchboard defeated by rat

NON-MUTANT RODENT in NUKE PLANT ELECTRO-SHOCKER

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top three mobile application threats

A careless rat is being blamed for a power outage that left the Fukushima nuclear plant's storage tanks without cooling.

Late on Monday, March 18, TEPCO experienced a power cut at cooling equipment serving the nuclear fuel storage tanks, in an incident that took 30 hours to overcome (the company emphaised that during the outage, radiation in the area “remained at a safe level”).

A faulty switchboard was blamed for the incident, and in the kind of explanation that doesn't exactly inspire confidence, TEPCO says a 15-cm (6-inch) dead rat found “near” the switchboard may have been linked to the failure. The company says it will further investigate the dead animal and possibly-associated “burn marks” on the switchboard.

A TEPCO statement referred to a “rat-like” creature (possibly because it wasn't in any fit state to identify itself), which conjures up images of something that might tempt Peter Jackson to take up B-grade horror again (after all, wasn't Black Sheep really his best work?).

Fukushima shutdown suspect, aka rattus rattus

The Wall Street Journal says the incident underscores the continuing vulnerability of the facility; the BBC observes that the switchboard in question is a “makeshift” unit, while Russia Today reaches for a handy panic button with claims the outage left the plant “one step from meltdown, in spite of TEPCO's assertion that the fuel pools remained below the safety limit of 65°C during the incident.

Two years after the plant's original meltdown following an earthquake and tsunami, the Japanese government now says the reactors exist in a state of “cold shutdown” and aren't releasing dangerous levels of radiation - so we can probably hold off welcoming our new mutant rodent overlords for a while longer. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Spanish village called 'Kill the Jews' mulls rebranding exercise
Not exactly attractive to the Israeli tourist demographic
Oz bank in comedy Heartbleed blog FAIL
Bank: 'We are now safely patched.' Customers: 'You were using OpenSSL?'
Sleuths find nosy NORKS drones on the Chinternet
UAVs likely to have been made in the Middle Kingdom
Och aye! It's the Loch Ness Monster – but only Apple fanbois can see it
Fondleslab-friendly beastie's wake spotted... OR WAS IT?
Dorian Nakamoto gets $23,000 payout over Bitcoin invention saga
Maintains he didn't create cryptocurrency, but will join community
Japanese boffin EYES up big bucks with strap-on digi-glasses
AgencyGlass saddles user with creepy OLED display
Forget the beach 'n' boardwalk, check out the Santa Cruz STEVE JOBS FOUNTAIN
Reg reader snaps shot of touching tribute to Apple icon
Happy 40th Playmobil: Reg looks back at small, rude world of our favourite tiny toys
Little men straddle LOHAN, attend tiny G20 Summit... ah, sweet memories...
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.