Three years later, Fukushima radiation leaves towns eerily empty

Seth Doane
CBS News
Three years later, Fukushima radiation leaves towns eerily empty

FUTABA, Japan - Every time Shuichi Saito goes home, he has to suit up to protect himself from radiation.

"We're allowed in 15 times a year," Saito told CBS News, on a trip back to his home near where a typhoon caused the Fukishima nuclear plant to leak dangerous amounts of radiation three years ago. "But, as my home and grounds deteriorate, as the weeds take over, it's depressing."

Saito's property has been in his family for 12 generations. He pointed out where family heirlooms, including their valuable Kimonos, were destroyed.

Walking through weeds, Saito pointed out where he once grew his prized spinach. Today, it's an overgrown mess. Still, before departing, he did a little maintenance, spreading weed-killer around his house.

"I have to look after my property," he said. "I can't fix it because of the radiation, and it's all I can do."

He lost his home and everything he'd built. Saito said Japan's government has turned its back. The only thing growing here these days are the weeds.

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