A man who helped clean up a Japanese nuclear plant after it was hit by a tsunami has died due to the radiation.
It is the first time Japan’s government has acknowledged a connection between a death and radiation exposure at the Fukushima plant, according to Japanese news reports.
In March 2011, a massive magnitude-9 earthquake shook the country’s north east, triggering a tsunami that caused the plant’s meltdown.
The nuclear plant in March 2011, as authorities battled to contain rising pressure in the reactors
The man in his 50s was in charge of measuring radiation at the plant after the disaster and he worked there until December 2011.
He also worked at other atomic power stations across Japan between 1980 and 2015 and is said to have worn a full-face mask and protective suit, officials said.
In February 2016, he was diagnosed with lung cancer.
The man was not publicly identified and his family have asked that the exact date of his death remains private.
The Japanese government has already paid compensation in the cases of four workers who developed cancer, according to reports.
A Japanese daily newspaper, Asahi Shimbun, says 17 plant workers have filed for compensation.
Along with the four who had their claims accepted, five claims have been rejected.
The tsunami killed around 18,000 people and caused a failure in the nuclear plant’s cooling system, resulting in a meltdown and the release of radioactive materials.
The nuclear disaster was the worst since Chernobyl and forced tens of thousands of people to flee their homes.
The area near the plant remains uninhabitable due to the danger from radiation.
The Tomari Nuclear Power Station, closed since the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, suffered a power cut but was cooling its fuel rods safely with emergency power, according to chief cabinet secretary Yoshihide Suga.
The plant’s operator Hokkaido Electric said there were no radiation irregularities.