Japanese gov’t report accuses firm of ignoring nuclear crisis
Yotaro Hatamura, head of an investigation committee on the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Tokyo. AP PhotoJapanese authorities and Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO) ignored the risk of an atomic accident because they believed in the “myth of nuclear safety,” a government-backed report on the Fukushima crisis said yesterday.
The study said officials were poorly trained to deal with the crisis after the plant’s reactors went into meltdown last year. “The fundamental problem lies in the fact that utilities, including TEPCO and the government, have failed to see the danger as reality as they were bound by a myth of nuclear safety and the notion that severe accidents do not happen at nuclear plants in our country,” report said according to Agence France-Presse.
The panel said the government and TEPCO failed to prevent the crisis because they were reluctant to invest time, effort and money in protecting against a natural disaster considered unlikely. TEPCO had even weighed in on a report about earthquake risk and asked the government to play down the likelihood of a tsunami in the region, the report said according to the Associated Press.