Damaged Japan nuke plant begin removing fuel rods

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Posted: Monday, November 18, 2013 12:00 am

TOKYO (AP) - Workers started removing radioactive fuel rods Monday from a reactor building at the crippled Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear power plant, Tokyo Electric Power Co. said. The painstaking and risky task is a crucial first step toward a full cleanup of the earthquake and tsunami-damaged plant in northeastern Japan.

The Unit 4 reactor was offline at the time of the March 2011 disaster, and its core didn't melt as Units 1-3 did. But hydrogen explosions blew the roof and walls off the Unit 4 building and weakened the structure, leaving it vulnerable to earthquakes.

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