Workers stopped a highly radioactive leak into the Pacific Ocean off Japan's flooded nuclear complex Wednesday, but with the plant far from stabilized, engineers prepared an injection of nitrogen to deter any new hydrogen explosions.
The government set its first radiation safety standards for fish Tuesday after Japan's tsunami-ravaged nuclear plant reported radioactive contamination in nearby seawater measuring at several million times the legal limit.
Japan's government revealed a series of missteps by the operator of a radiation-leaking nuclear plant on Saturday, including sending workers in without protective footwear in its faltering efforts to control a monumental crisis.
Thyroid cancer for sure. Leukemia, probably. Too much radiation can raise the risk of developing cancer years down the road, scientists agree, and the young are most vulnerable. But just how much or how long an exposure is risky is not clear.
The Japanese government acknowledged Friday that it was overwhelmed by the scale of last week's twin natural disasters, slowing the response to the nuclear crisis that was triggered by the earthquake and tsunami that left at least 10,000 people dead.
Risks from possible radiation exposure remain greatest for the workers scrambling to cool reactors at a Japanese nuclear power plant. Those who have been evacuated from the site are considered safe, as are the 39 million people who live in the greater Tokyo region.
Officials feared "a radiation leak" early Tuesday after a third explosion rocked one of Japan's three crippled nuclear reactors, as rescue teams rushed supplies to survivors of Friday's massive earthquake and tsunami and a gruesome tide of bodies washed up on the beaches.