December 27, 2011 |
REPORTING FROM SEOUL -- Japan's response to the crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant was flawed by poor communication and delays in releasing data on dangerous radiation leaks at the facility, which was struck by an earthquake-triggered tsunami on March 11, a government-appointed investigative panel has found. The report attaches blame to both Japan's central government as well as the utility that operates the plant -- the Tokyo Electric Power Co. -- depicting a scene of harried officials incapable of making decisions to stem radiation leaks as the situation at the coastal plant worsened in the days and weeks following the disaster.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 25, 2011 |
The federal government's radiation alert network in California is not fully functional, leaving the stretch of coast between Los Angeles and San Francisco without the crucial real-time warning system in the event of a nuclear emergency. Six of the Environmental Protection Agency's 12 California sensors ? including the three closest to the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant near San Luis Obispo ? are sending data with "anomalies" to the agency's laboratory in Montgomery, Ala., said Mike Bandrowski, manager of the EPA's radiation program.
March 21, 2011 |
Concern over food contaminated by radiation from areas surrounding the troubled nuclear plant in Fukushima spread beyond Japan's borders Monday morning with world health officials warning of the potential dangers posed by the tainted food and one Japanese restaurant in Taiwan serving up radiation gauges alongside its meals. World Health Organization officials told reporters Monday that Japan should act quickly to ban food sales from areas around the damaged nuclear plant, saying radiation in food is more dangerous than radioactive particles in the air because of accumulation in the human body.
March 20, 2011 |
Marco Gutierrez was taking no chances. With radiation still leaking this weekend from the damaged Fukushima nuclear plant 150 miles away, the Tokyo resident joined the legions of foreigners — and a growing number of Japanese — fleeing the world's most populated city. "I have friends of friends who work for TEPCO, the power company [that operates Fukushima], and they all said that the worst of the radiation exposure was going to take place over the next two days," said Gutierrez, a 26-year-old consultant from Seattle, as he jostled among the crowds at Tokyo's Haneda Airport on Saturday for a flight to the southern island of Okinawa, one of the farthest points in Japan from the crippled reactors.
March 15, 2011 |
Dangerous levels of radiation escaped a quake-stricken nuclear power plant after one reactor's steel containment structure was apparently breached by an explosion, and another reactor building in the same complex caught fire, Japan's leaders told a frightened population. Authorities warned that people within 20 miles of the crippled reactors should stay indoors to avoid being sickened by radiation. The fast-moving developments at the Fukushima No. 1 (Daiichi) plant, 150 miles north of Tokyo, catapulted the 4-day-old nuclear crisis to an entirely new level, threatening to overshadow even the massive damage and loss of life spawned by a devastating earthquake and tsunami.
March 12, 2011 |
A day after responding to one of the worst earthquakes on record and a massive tsunami, the Japanese government sought to allay fears of a radioactive disaster at a nuclear power plant on the country's battered northeastern coast. The outer walls of the Fukushima power plant's No. 1 reactor were blown off by a hydrogen explosion Saturday, leaving only a skeletal frame. Officials said four workers at the site received non-life-threatening injuries. The inner container holding the reactor's fuel rods is not believed to be damaged, said Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano, and workers were cooling the facilities with seawater.