26 Février 2016
February 25, 2016
Japan's government says it will instruct the operator of the damaged Fukushima nuclear plant to take steps to prevent a recurrence of its failure to swiftly determine that a meltdown occurred.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga on Thursday expressed regret over the delay by Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, in determining meltdowns had taken place at the Fukushima Daiichi plant in March 2011.
The utility on Wednesday said it could have judged the incidents at 3 reactors to have been meltdowns 3 days after the accident if it had followed an in-house manual. The firm did not determine there had been meltdowns until 2 months later.
Suga said it was extremely regrettable that TEPCO failed to properly check the manual at that time and gave wrong explanations about the meltdowns.
Niigata Prefecture, which hosts a nuclear power plant, has been asking TEPCO to clarify its grounds for determining meltdowns. The utility previously said no such grounds were determined, even though definitions of a meltdown were included in the manual.
Suga said TEPCO officials should be aware that nuclear power generation is not possible without a relationship of trust with host communities. He said the utility must provide detailed explanations to the prefecture.
He also said the industry ministry will strictly instruct the firm to look into what happened at the time and to take proper steps to prevent a recurrence.