Tepco admits rod damage

 
City A.M. Reporter
TOKYO Electric Power (Tepco), the operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant disabled by the 11 March earthquake and tsunami, confirmed yesterday that there were meltdowns of fuel rods at three of the plant’s reactors early in the crisis.

It had said earlier this month that fuel rods in the No.1 reactor had melted, but officials of the utility confirmed yesterday that there were also meltdowns of fuel rods at the plant’s No.2 and No.3 reactors early in the crisis.

The disaster has triggered a drop of more than 80 per cent in Tokyo Electric’s share price and forced the company to seek government aid as it faces compensation liabilities that some analysts say could top $100bn.

The Tepco officials said damage to the No.2 reactor fuel rods began three days after the quake. A delegation from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will present a report, based on their inspection, on 20 June.