TEPCO admits it delayed report of Fukushima meltdown

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  • 31

    Burning Bush

    Enough lies.

    The government knew from day 1 that they had melted down.

    They're mocking us with these childish explanations.

  • -33

    shonanbb

    I do not think it was a bad idea. Panic would have occurred and everyone would have wanted to evacuate Tokyo. Radiation in small dosages is not really that bad. We are over cautious.

  • -5

    bjohnson23

    what's a little bit more radiation going to do to our daily consumption, afterall the limit thresholds WERE raised so we are assured our safety is not an issue. In time bigger marine life and two headed fish make for an added fish head soup bowl but will they charge us for the extra head? hmmm.

  • 6

    Sensato

    [TEPCO] acknowledged [that] it failed for two months to announce that meltdowns had occurred in the cores of three of the reactors.

    TEPCO has been accused of softening its language to cover up the seriousness of the disaster.

    I assumed it was common knowledge that knew of the meltdowns but was trying to cover it up in the initial months after the disaster. They were obviously aware very early on that there had been a meltdown.

    I remember watching the press conferences with the TEPCO 'experts' on NHK in the weeks after the tsunami. As I remember it, they were carrying huge binders that they would start flipping through after nearly every question. Heads down. No eye contact with the reports.

    One of the scariest moments of my life, and it made a 'flyjin' out of me and my family for several weeks after.

  • 9

    FizzBit

    I wonder if there will be any (WHAT!) Japanese public reaction to this admission since most foreigners were probably already aware of this.

  • 22

    sillygirl

    Unaware of a manual???? Japan is RUN on manuals. Just ask for something other than what's on the "menu" (not talking only about food) and you know what I mean.

  • 16

    letsberealistic

    shonanbbFEB. 26, 2016 - 06:56AM JST

    I do not think it was a bad idea. Panic would have occurred and everyone would have wanted to evacuate Tokyo. Radiation in small dosages is not really that bad. We are over cautious.

    That's doesn't make sense - there was no panic once the truth about there being a meltdown was eventually revealed! They thought they could hide it, THAT's why they didn't initially reveal the truth about the meltdown, NOT to avoid panic.

  • -12

    katsu78

    Burning BushFEB. 26, 2016 - 06:53AM JST Enough lies. The government knew from day 1 that they had melted down.

    Strictly speaking, we don't know this is a lie and TEPCO is not "the government".

  • 15

    Sensato

    TEPCO said it discovered the emergency manual this month

    So, it took them five years to 'discover' this elusive manual? And if only they had had the emergency manual when there was an emergency.

    Given the constant disarray and blundering in Japan's nuclear industry, its probably not a good idea for this nation to think about restarting idled reactors or extending the operating life of those built decades ago.

  • 3

    albaleo

    I'm a little confused about this. According to the timeline published by Scientific American, on March 16, 2011:

    TEPCO estimates that many of Fukushima Daiichi's fuel rods have suffered damage, including 70 percent of the fuel in Unit 1 and 33 percent in Unit 2. The utility suspects that Unit 3's core is also damaged.

    <http://www.scientificamerican.com/media/multimedia/0312-fukushima-timeline/

    Other reports of this used "melted" instead of "damaged", and I don't think there was much doubt at the time that the damage involved melting.

  • 1

    ThePBot

    TEPCO admits it delayed report of Fukushima meltdown

    You don't say? (pun?)

  • 4

    since1981

    "Discovered and emergency manual THIS month???? Are we not talking about a NUCLEAR power plant? Sure, I trust the government to allow KEPCO to restart their plants.

  • 4

    trouble

    The only thing the public can do is for the voters to elect Diet members who will pass legislation that has legal recourse for this type of action.

  • 9

    smithinjapan

    So, five years... FIVE YEARS it took them to admit something the rest of the world already knew as fact. Imagine how long it'll take them to admit the things we DON'T know yet about this disaster! I predict it'll be 2032 before a future government admits the situation was "not under control" when the government promised it was in 2012 and were bidding for the Olympics, 2050 before the company admits people may have gotten cancer as a result of the meltdown and that there is "no way they could have known at the time", etc.

    Of course, by then the companies will have changed names a few times, and there will have been more disasters, but hey.

    “Core damage or meltdown, it didn’t make any difference in how we responded to the emergency, which was to cool the cores no matter what,”

    Yeah, except that your leaders on the ground (in Osaka) were demanding the plant be evacuated, and you were preventing the US and other foreign groups from helping cool down the reactors with sea water because you wanted to SAVE them, until it was too late, of course! So, not quite "no matter what".

  • 5

    klausdorth

    They "bsd" all the time.

    So many people here said from the beginning that there was a meltdown. But NO, it wasn't. Just some problems, nothing they couldn't handle. Well, maybe the problems were bigger than "we" thought, but nothing to worry about. No, not really a meltdown, at least "we" can't confirm this. And so on.

    I am sure there will be more to come in the future. But rest assured the government and TEPCO will have everything under control.

  • -5

    Wc626

    I wonder if there will be any (WHAT!) Japanese public reaction to this admission since most foreigners were probably already aware of this.

    Because foreigners aren't a bunch of sheep. Sheepish people=sheepish reaction.

  • 7

    warispeace

    Yet still nobody involved in this man-made disaster has been charged or found criminally negligent. Power indeed protects power.

  • 6

    Aly Rustom

    TEPCO said its initial wording may have been misleading

    Correction: They lied. Pure and simple.

    Enough lies. The government knew from day 1 that they had melted down. They're mocking us with these childish explanations

    Exactly.

    I do not think it was a bad idea. Panic would have occurred and everyone would have wanted to evacuate Tokyo. Radiation in small dosages is not really that bad. We are over cautious.

    People did evacuate of their own accord. Everyone left for the Kansai area. Lack of transparancy made the situation worse. Also, we are not talking about small doses. Thyroid cancer is on the rise among children in that area today because of Tepco's lies.

  • 3

    Goodlucktoyou

    Jail?

  • 6

    Skeeter27

    I am not at all surprised. If TEPCO has shown us anything, it's their constant ability to screw up and not be forthcoming about their screw ups.....

  • 3

    Only_In_Japan

    DISGUSTING!

  • 4

    danalawton1@yahoo.com

    Just before the 3/11/11 Tsunami, 30% of Japan's Elec Power was generated at its 17 Nuclear Plants and numerous reactors. TEPCO says it was unaware that a meltdown exceeding 5% should be reported as just that, a meltdown. Where was Government oversight? Japan has the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA), where were they, why didn't they come in and supervise the situation? You'd think, with that many nuclear reactors that there would be an authority that trains for disasters. That the Japanese Govt left everything to TEPCO to figure out was a big mistake. To me, the Government of Japan has much more liability on this issue than TEPCO.

  • 6

    papigiulio

    Anyone surprised really? Now I know what CO in tepco stands for, Criminal Organization.

  • 5

    Spanki

    Criminal negligence???

  • -9

    nakanoguy01

    i think most of you need to brush up on simple reading comprehension. tepco did not say that they just discovered an emergency manual. they said that they didn 't know the emergency manual defined a meltdown at 5%, which is actually quite low. in addition, the penultimate sentence says that there is no international definition of what constitutes a meltdown. from wiki: The term is not officially defined by the International Atomic Energy Agency[2] or by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.[3]

    regardless of what language was used, within a few days, everyone knew how much radiation was being released and could make up their own minds on how best to cope with the situation. so what's with this "liar, liar" mentality?

  • 2

    Citizen2012

    They are insulting people over and over with statement like those, how can they think we will believe a story that they just find the meltdown manual after 5 years. TEPCO and govt, all the same, TEPCO is managed by guys decided by the govt and the govt has 51% of that shameful company, TEPCO's manual = "money first, people's health last and if you check all their actions, you will see that they do, indeed, follow that manual . How good you are to tell lies will decide which top position you can get there, this company should die and public money NOT used to cover their operating cost but help people that had to flea or have thyroid cancer now... another major public money diversion.

  • 4

    Sensato

    tepco did not say that they just discovered an emergency manual.

    @nakanoguy01

    "TEPCO said it discovered the emergency manual this month," according to the article.

    What was that again about our reading comprehension?

  • 2

    NZ2011

    Nakanoguy.

    Tepco were knowingly deceptive and dishonest about the situation especially in the early months, as their executives moved their families out of the region and country.

    Not only this they had been given safety advice, which they disregarded in favor of profits, that might well have at least reduced the eventual man made disaster (Yes triggered by a natural event but nature doesn't make poorly designed power plants) the public then bailed them out while they still try to reduce their responsibility and play the situation down till this day..

    Worst of all the government is almost certainly entirely complicit in the whole affair, and if not at very allowed this absurd self regulated industry to exist, which it still is pushing this industry... Extending power plants operating limits and so on and so forth as if everything is fine and this industry isn't an example of the very worst of Japan Inc criminal negligence.

    So I think liar liar is about the kindest thing you could say.

  • 2

    jerseyboy

    nakanoguy01 -- I think maybe its you who could use a "brush up on reading comprehension". Or stop trying to defend TEPCO with your usual semantics. First off, regardless of the circumstances behing them suddenly dicovering that 5% defined a meltdown by their own definition, the key stattistic is:

    despite early damage estimates ranging from 25 to 55%.

    And you don't need a damn manual to make bells go off at that level.

    Second, the spokeperson at the government "watch dog" agency was fired just for using the word "meltdown", even though history has proven he was doing the responsible thing.

    Finally, your comment that "regardless of what language was used, within a few days, everyone knew how much radiation was being released and could make up their own minds on how best to cope with the situation" is just pure nonsense. TEPCO and the government have a responsibility to keep the public safe and provide the information necessary to make informed decisions. Saying that people should have figured out that they were, "softening their langauge" is insulting to say the least.

    Luckily, to use your term, I knew they were "liars", and got the hell out a few months after the non-meltdowns. And am now, as I type this, enjoying the view of sunset over the mountains from my patio, and put worrying about TEPCO and its incompetence way in my rearview mirror. Sorry for you folks you didn't have that option.

  • 2

    since1981

    is it nakanoguy01 or politicalguy#1? Our lives depend on the decisions of leaders both corporate and political. I can't understand why anyone would defense such irresponsible leadership, if you can call it leadership.

  • 2

    badsey3

    Masao Yoshida:

    Remarkably, there was no plan for what to do next because nobody from his company, Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco) had predicted total loss of power at a nuclear plant. As a string of hydrogen blasts tore the plant apart, Mr Yoshida and his team improvised, trying to stop an even worse calamity. **Many in Japan consider him a hero for ignoring orders **to stop injecting seawater into one of the reactors. His bosses feared the water would destroy it.

  • 5

    sangetsu03

    Funny, days after the quake I was talking to a friend who works at the DOE laboratories in Los Alamos. He told me that cesium had been detected around Fukushima, which could only mean that the reactor had melted down. Funny that America knew of the meltdown months before the Japanese did. Of course Tepco knew the reactor had melted down, if not from their own measurements, from those from other countries who were monitoring the situation. But no doubt any release of information could only be approved through the appropriate channels, with the appropriate authorization, and the ball gets kicked around for who knows how long until someone with enough balls (or an expendable scapegoat) applies his hanko to the necessary documents.

  • 2

    Disillusioned

    I remember this very well. It is true they did try to lessen and cover up the severity of the meltdowns. I also distinctly remember PM Kan screaming at the TEPCO bosses to get some answers. In a way, it was a good thing they did try to conceal the severity because it avoided a mass panic. However, it also meant that, many people in the area did not evacuate immediately and suffered a lot of radiation exposure because of it.

    So, now, TEPCO have admitted the meltdowns were a man made incident caused by shoddy maintenance and a lack of upgrading safety equipment and, they have admitted to concealing the truth, which exposed many people to large amounts of radiation. However, nobody is facing any kind or legal action or being held accountable. Steal ten yen from a shrine and go to jail for a year. Cause the world's worst nuclear accident and get off scott free. I doesn't seem right, does it?

  • -6

    Danny Bloom

    Let's hope they get it right next time...

  • 3

    Ricky Kaminski

    Standard Japan Inc. procedures. THAT'S in the manual.

  • 1

    windandsea

    The machine cannot stop the machine.

  • 1

    Mr. Noidall

    There needs to be an international body of experts to wrest this problem from Japanese hands in which it has been just a complete debacle. The radiation leakage is seeping into the ocean which affects the earth and everything in it. Contaminated debris is floating to other shores. It's no longer just Japan's problem. There needs to be an international body to take over pronto.

  • 3

    porto

    That they were unaware of THEIR OWN safety manual and THEIR OWN definition of a meltdown just further proves their incompetence and their inability to safely operate nuclear power plants.

    This is just like a child wetting the bed and hiding the sheets, rather than andmitting the mess and cleaning it up. TEPCO is nothing more than a bed wetting child, and the meltdown their pee stain.

  • 0

    TheGodfather

    accused of softening its language to cover up the seriousness

    That's nothing new in Japan. All communication here is at the level of a manga-reading ret@rd...

  • 0

    shonanbb

    What I wrote does make sense. They let the people get used to the fact that there was radiation about, and people became attuned to it. Only then could they learn of the melt downs and not panic. I know what I am talking about.

    Just as people are immune to deflation, they also became ammune to radiation talk. Been there done tha tsought of thing.

  • 0

    Christopher Glen

    Tepco are merely confirming what we always knew. They should be stripped of control of the plants as soon as possible, in favour of the UN or atomic commission. They cannot be trusted

  • 0

    nandakandamanda

    What else will they finally admit? That the earthquake did much of the damage, to #1 at least, before the tsunami even struck?

    Some good reading here:

    http://www.fukuleaks.org/web/?page_id=10166

    Including, "On May 15, TEPCO went some way toward admitting at least some of these claims in a report called ”Reactor Core Status of Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station Unit One.” The report said there was pre-tsunami damage to key facilities including pipes. ”This means that assurances from the industry in Japan and overseas that the reactors were robust is now blown apart,” said Shaun Burnie, an independent nuclear waste consultant. ”It raises fundamental questions on all reactors in high seismic risk areas.”

  • 0

    sf2k

    Admission of guilt usually means a jail sentence. Somewhere. I guess

  • -1

    Star-viking

    shonanbb is right, considering the panic in Tohoku and further south declaring a "meltdown" would have been disastrous.

    Additionally, "meltdown" is not even a scientifically defined term, so some reference in an in-house manual is hardly authoritative.

  • 2

    anotherexpat

    “Core damage or meltdown, it didn’t make any difference in how we responded to the emergency, which was to cool the cores no matter what,” TEPCO spokesman Shinichi Nakakuki said."

    Anyone else remember the video of those MSDF helicopters dumping seawater down the cooling towers? Amateur hour.

  • 2

    Alex Einz

    if it wasnt that serious, it sounds like a comedy skit... they have emergency manual, that couldnt be found until few years after emergency occured?

  • -1

    Heda_Madness

    Shaun Burnie, an anti nuclear consultant.

    I've corrected that for you.

    Not really sure what the story is here to be honest. It doesn't change the facts that few will die and that the likes of enenews, fukuleak and numerous contributors on this forum have massively overplayed the impacts and damage. Few people will die as a result of Fukushima. Thousands more will die as a result of the switch to fossil fuels.

    Just remember those facts.

  • -3

    Heda_Madness

    Wonderful..can't dispute that few will die. Can't dispute that thousands will die as a result of the switch. Can't dispute this news changes nothing.

    The facts are that foe every kilowatt of power generated fewer people die from nuclear than any other form of energy.
    Instead of the personal attacks why not try reading some science

    You might actually learn something.

  • 0

    Gaijin Desi

    Coming March, It will be completing 5 YEARS.

  • 1

    wipeout

    Considering the panic in To further south declaring a "meltdown" would have been disastrous.

    Preventing panic, right. No doubt the public was extremely reassured that TEPCO's top officials were invisible, and not available for comment, throughout the worst of the emergency. That's always a good sign that the situation is well in hand.

  • 0

    Matthew Simon

    Seems like disasters are like war the first casualty is always the truth.

  • 1

    Star-viking

    Wipeout,

    Were you anywhere near Tohoku or eastern Japan just after the 11th of March 2011? Many people were certainly getting close to panic. A few people I knew left Japan, and more shifted to the Sea of Japan coast. TEPCO declaring a meltdown? That would have been chaos.

    As for TEPCO execs not being available, most of the news was going through the govt, with Edano giving updates all the time. The TEPCO people would not be able to add to that, givn how things were on the ground.

  • 0

    Fadamor

    While I don't expect officials to have something like the "company emergency manual" memorized, I would CERTAINLY expect that manual to be the first thing they reach for when a reactor is in trouble. I'm sorry, I can't believe nobody at the time said "let's check the emergency manual", and I REALLY don't believe the manual was "discovered" only this month.

  • -1

    mukashiyokatta

    Yet another reason why NO nuclear power reactors must be restarted.

  • -1

    Kobe White Bar Owner

    Learning to swallow ones pride is not the same as defeat it show maturity. Admitting you a wrong is impossible for almost all Japanese people, businesses and governments full stop.

  • -1

    michaelqtodd

    is important to eat only at home. Purchase food from co-ops and other places that test radiation levels. If you must buy from supermarkets check the prefecture of origin and avoid fish species that migrate. Restaurants and convenience store chains get food cheaply from Fukushima so every time you eat at them you are putting yourself at risk

  • 0

    badsey3

    @mukashiyokatta Yet another reason why NO nuclear power reactors must be restarted

    The costs to idle a nuclear reactor is almost the same as just running it and the costs and time to decommission a reactor are larger. = Even though the reactor is shut down you are still paying for that plus the new energy source (coal/oil etc). = expect energy costs to slowly double over time.

    The most cost efficient plan would be run them so the oldest ones can be decommissioned over time and none should ever be replaced. The problem with this is that Tokyo has very large energy needs and people still prefer the city. Tokyo and others should mandate 5/10/20/40/50/100% of energy for new buildings must come from the building itself and give incentives.

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