AP: Fukushima Daiichi workers could try to sabotage plant, warns their doctor

Published: August 6th, 2012 at 12:01 am ET


Title: Doctors: Japan nuclear plant workers face stigma
Source: Associated Press
Author: By MALCOLM FOSTER (Mari Yamaguchi contributed to this report)
Date: Aug 05, 2012 4:11 AM EDT

A growing number of Japanese workers who are risking their health to shut down the crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant are suffering from depression, anxiety about the future and a loss of motivation, say two doctors who visit them regularly.


Worries about radiation exposure aren’t overwhelmingly prevalent among the TEPCO workers, both doctors say, although some workers are concerned, especially those with higher exposure counts.


Workers at J-Village approached by a journalist refused to talk, and other contractors said they would get in trouble with the utility if they did.


A growing number of the workers tell the visiting psychiatrists of sagging motivation and hopelessness, and [Jun Shigemura, who heads a volunteer team of about ten psychiatrists and psychologists from the National Defense Medical College who meet with Tokyo Electric Power Co. nuclear plant employees] warned that such attitudes could lead to “misconduct or human error or sabotage.” He also said the workers are drinking more alcohol and smoking more.


The article end with this message from a Tepco official, “The public’s trust in TEPCO has declined […] Hopefully as that improves, it will boost the workers’ spirits.”

h/t Anonymous tip

Published: August 6th, 2012 at 12:01 am ET


Related Posts

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  2. NHK: Gov’t stops helping Fukushima Daiichi workers with medical care — “Should be treated the same as workers at any other nuclear plant” September 12, 2012
  3. Sabotage at Fukushima Daiichi? Worker: “Someone did it on purpose… I’m convinced, it was intentional” after basements flooded with 200 tons of highly radioactive water — NHK: “Error or deliberate act”? — Official: Security cameras needed April 18, 2014
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37 comments to AP: Fukushima Daiichi workers could try to sabotage plant, warns their doctor

  • kalidances

    The good doctors are saying that the workers of Fukushima have just realized that they have nothing left to lose.

  • BeautifullyEuphoric

    “The public’s trust in TEPCO has declined […] Hopefully as that improves, it will boost the workers’ spirits.”

    What does that say?

    *Rubs Eyes and Blinks…*

    • JustmeAlso

      To me it says that the safety myth and public trust (along with the tax) is exploited and used as the pillars the whole nuke industry is built on.

  • Sickputer

    The Fukushima 50 are fighting against 5000 Godzillas. They feel like their grandfathers who flew the balsa wood kamikaze planes against the Allies. Hopeless.

    No wonder they are depressed. Poisoned and outnumbered.

    Madness in Japan…

    • rambojim

      They have no one to blame but themselves Sickputer. Their grandfathers thought they would be heroes,ramming their planes into our battleships was a last desperate attempt to hold onto the glory that was once Japan.Keep in mind that kids going off to war today are not fighting for their country,they are fighting for their government.There is a big difference. If the Japanese knew the true dangers of radiation,would they let their kids go to school to play in a contaminated play yard? If the Japanese people knew the true dangers of radiation,there wouldn't be anyone going to clean up the nuke plant tomorrow…

      • flatsville

        >>>Keep in mind that kids going off to war today are not fighting for their country,they are fighting for their government.<<<

        They are actually fighting for their corpgov.

        My son has enlistment age friends. Once I explain who they are really fighting for and how corpgov treats them as expendable commodities, there is little to no talk of enlisting.

        It is really much easier with this generation than it was with previous. They are much more cynical. Just show them the facts and evidence and they get it immediately.

        They do find it amazing that this has gone on for generations. I am always surprised at their reactions when I explain some of the big name political families in U.S. history have funded the "enemy"…like the Bush family did with the Nazi Party and how American corporations were complicit in the worst of the war crimes like IBM and the Holocaust.

        Many are still under the illusion that WWII was the last "good war." Not so.

        They are also under the impression that the "Nuclear Holocaust" will come with a war…big explosions and flashes of light. I explain that it is happening now, quietly and subtly…without trying to bum them out too badly.

        They were all born before TMI and Chernobyl. They know little to nothing about the events other than they may recognize the names. They are aware of Fukushima, but it's far away and they believe it is either fixed or somehow no longer a problem because it is not in the MSM news cycle.

  • arclight arclight

    i suppose the constant bullying to keep quite and the overall censorship of nuclear matters are not going to help much.. added to the low wages and risky dose measurements/estimates. the little info on dose is caused by earlier iaea interference into studies in this field and totally ignoring ALL the studies done on this in russia and the eastern block countries..

    given all that and the fact that nuclear industry secrecy has bred a generation that doesnt even know what a gieger counter is.. how can they expect to find people to work at daichi with any sort of engineering background.. most nuke engineers are changing jobs because the industry is too wierd!

    transparency and education would have solved the manpower shortage.. the limit on nuclear knowledge in education is coming home to roost..
    i blame the IAEA and the UN etc .. keep it a secret and you increase the fear of nuclear.. then you can blame the fear of nuclear as the reason for peoples natural fears of radiation.. bit of a catch 22 there..??

    ho hum

    • andagi andagi

      Dear Arclight,
      To follow your point …and then ICD code them for psychological or other issues refering to anxiety/depression including any substance use (any other reason than they were exposed to radiation) …and 'gottcha!' they're off the hook, it becomes your problem, and you're suddenly and excrutiatingly aware not only of your fate, but now faced with the possibility of surgery, radiation, chemo, rehab …and possibly losing your house over the costs. No nuke accountability. Pure deception.
      'Nite all.

      • andagi andagi

        Dear Folks,
        Oh my, will we sometime in the near future need a lawyer to visit a doctor?

        • arclight arclight

          actually andagi

          the "consumer" would need to go to a new breed of psydoctor/warrior

          that has a pill and an excuse for all ailments…

          see posts below 🙂

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    OH..BS..BS..sabotage what?
    Sabotage the damndest mess on earth?

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    From the National Defense Medical Hospital… a pysop in the making.

  • BreadAndButter BreadAndButter

    Very good points! They need the best food, shelter, medical assistance (body & soul) which is available. Those workers are putting their lifes at risk for the sake of all of us…we need to separate clearer between the workers and the criminal management, also here at enenews, I think.

    For example when we rant about Tepco "taking weekends off".
    Just a thought.

    • BreadAndButter BreadAndButter

      This was meant to go under our lemming's post above!

    • Sickputer

      Yes you are so totally correct and I think Enenewsers overwhelmingly admire the bravery of every worker at FNPP. I am sorry they are depressed and I know who to blame for it… The cheap bastard nucleocrats.

      Give them 600,000 comrades at the plant and you will see the depression lessen. I seriously doubt they would do anything to deliberately worsen the situation at Fukushima. As noted… How much worse can a fatal train wreck become when rescuers begin dealing with mangled steel and dangerous cargo?

  • arclight arclight

    "..Since mental health is a leading cause of disability, physical morbidity, and mortality, health monitoring after radiation accidents like Fukushima should include standard measures of well-being.
    Moreover, given the comorbidity of mental and physical health, the findings support the value of training non-psychiatrist physicians in recognizing and treating common mental health problems like depression in Fukushima patients….." ARGHHHH!

    "..Human-made catastrophes involving toxic exposures that have the potential to harm population health, especially radiation exposure, have an even more severe and relentless psychological impact than natural disasters [3]. In the 20th century, the atomic bombings and nuclear plant melt-downs were the most dreaded and highly stigmatizing of all catastrophes.The English-language reports about Hiroshima and Nagasaki survivors indicate a psychological aftermath that included stigma, anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress (intrusive, recurring recollections of the event; psychic numbing) that were long-term [4–6], independent of the objective physical sequelae [7], and associated with health risk perceptions [5, 8]. Theeffects of the Three Mile Island and Chernobyl disasters followed a similar pattern [2, 9]…"



    SPEECHLESS FOR NOW.. the pronukes came up with a psychology report in 2012 and its uk based.. 🙁 grrrrrr!

    • arclight arclight

      ah the ministry of truth appears at the end,,

      "I wish to thank Professor Norito Kawakami from the School of Public Health, Graduate School of Medicine, University of Tokyo, for his insightful comments on this paper…"

      the WHO/IAEA showing its ugly head here

      "Rumours about brain damage in affected children proliferated after the accident because of findings on mental retardation in offspring of the A-bomb survivors. The World Health Organization (WHO) designed the International Pilot Study of Brain Damage In-Utero to evaluate exposed children at 7 years of age and concluded that the levels of mental retardation, cognitive impairment, and emotional problems did not differ significantly from controls.."

      and finally the likely symptoms of the workers (not sabotage)

      "..There is compelling evidence that working as a liquidator, especially in the spring and summer of 1986, had long-term mental health consequences, with an excess of suicide found in a cohort from Estonia [23] and significantly higher rates of depression, suicide ideation, post-traumatic stress disorder, and severe headache found in a cohort from Ukraine compared to age and geographic matched controls [24]. The Ukraine study also found a dose–response relationship between exposure severity and post-traumatic symptom severity…"

      they then go on to confuse the russian study…

    • arclight arclight

      any abnormality following or resulting from a disease or injury or treatment; "paralysis is one of the sequelae of poliomyelitis

    • arclight arclight

      "…the value of training non-psychiatrist physicians in recognizing and treating common mental health problems…""

      no no no nop no no
      BAD PRACTICE..""

      it takes years of intensive study on yourself and learning the theories and techniques and application.. THERE will be NO normal depression here and the local doctors are as prone to psychological issues that they will not challenge.. psychologists work with a support network and offer multiple treatments designed for the individual.. a psychologist did not hrlp to write the above uk report.. OBVIOUSLY…!!

      physicists and doctors playing freud! yikes!!

      • arclight arclight

        for balance

        The Complicity of Psychologists in Torture

        "..The fact that members of our own profession, and those who oversee them, continue to condone torture either through active or implicit participation suggests to me that our profession is in trouble…"


        • arclight arclight

          of course tepco could hire one of the torture orientated psychologists to write a book and design a training seminar.. could also give torture techniques to doctors to use when people begin to get "illegal" ideas

          pavlovs dog?? it did work..!!

          or maybe the pill route would be more effective..

          "..There is an alarming connection between alcoholism and the various prescription drugs that increase serotonin……."


          lol! so they give you pills that make you drink alcohol and then blame the alcohol as the causation.. that would confuse the stats a bit??

          maybe the torture route wont be needed, but a good torture psychologist could have a field day with these statistics and come up with an interesting and believable book.. and make a bleeding fortune too! 🙁

  • aigeezer aigeezer

    These doctors are from the "National Defense Medical College". They work for the Gov/Mil/Corp machine. They are not, in any sense, "the workers' doctors".


    The are government mouthpieces. Whether their concerns are valid or not is unknowable, but we can assume an agenda is in play – as several previous comments suggest.

    • flatsville

      Yes. I caught that too. I was immediately suspicious.

      The agenda is in play. These doctors are setting up the workers to take the fall when the so-called remediation fails or goes terribly wrong.

      I guess I'm surprised that it took japcorpgov so long to launch the effort to lay the blame elsewhere.

      • aigeezer aigeezer

        There was a meeting this week with Tapco and American nuke heavyweights. I assume they worked on strategy, and details may eventually emerge through FOIA requests. The two stories may or may not be connected, but it's another thing worth watching. See if American Gov/Media voices start pushing some version of this story – "be very afraid of rogue workers" or "we must intervene" kind of thing.

  • aigeezer aigeezer

    On reflection, I think the industry ploy "rogue worker sabotage possible" will backfire if the public pays attention.

    People will realize that, by that logic, disgruntled workers could take down any nuke plant anywhere. One more reason to shut them all down.

    In the case of Fukushima, now that the meme is public, it begs the question "why not replace the workers if you know they are a risk?"

    I wonder what endgame plan is in place – on the surface, it seems like the industry is just digging a deeper hole for itself.

    • arclight arclight

      "", disgruntled workers could take down any nuke plant anywhere.""

      great observation aigeezer

  • hbjon hbjon

    Nothing like a chipper pep talk with a shrink to help motivate workers to face the jaws of the worst nuclear accident this world has seen in the last 14 billions years or so. Can you say cheese? This is something I tried ringing the alarm bells on over a year ago aigeezer. Monkeys being trained to pick up fuel and place it in oil? I've been scared shitless, on the verge of paralysis.

  • patb2009

    smoking more, while eating radioactive food and being exposed to external radiation.
    Add in stressors of bad pay, bad working environment and lack of family and support,
    I wouldn't be surprised to see cancer rates in these workers skyrocket.

    I've heard that many of the cities frequented by the cleanup workers are becoming unsafe, very unsafe for women.

    I doubt any worker can sabotage the plant any worse then TEPCO already has screwed it up, but,
    I could see increasing rates of worker error. Workers showing up drunk and dropping key elements in a lift or accidentally causing fires.

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    The hopelessness is real. And permanent.

  • arclight arclight

    Muto Ruiko and the Movement of Fukushima Residents to Pursue Criminal Charges against Tepco Executives and Government Officials

    Tomomi YAMAGUCHI and Muto Ruiko
    Translation by Norma Field

    "..There is another dimension to Muto’s sensitivity that should be underscored. Not only has she herself been a special education teacher, but she has a long and close friendship with Asaka Yuho, a disability as well as antinuclear activist. In Chicago, Muto emphasized the impact that this friendship has had on her. In her Chicago talk she referred to the fear of parents of children with disabilities—especially single mothers, who bear some of the heaviest burdens—that radiation would bring further division and discrimination. As Asaka Yuho warns, the antinuclear movement itself risks fostering prejudice and discrimination by circulating photographic and other images of disabled people as a warning of the consequences of radiation exposure.6 Muto’s longtime concern for people with disabilities has a concrete link to her current activities. .."


    • arclight arclight

      …"From among many issues that Muto addressed in her talk, I will focus on the “safety campaign” and decontamination. A major source of division lies in the fact that people have not known what information to trust, a situation exacerbated by the “safety campaign” promoted by the Fukushima Prefectural Government, the Japan Atomic Energy Agency, and other institutions. Fukushima Prefecture has actively promoted a “safety campaign,” symbolized by the hiring of Yamashita Shunichi as radiation risk management adviser. Yamashita’s credibility rests on from his long-time association with the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Nagasaki University. Following his appointment, he has made numerous public appearances emphasizing the negligible health effects from the disaster and conversely, the seriousness of psychological risks—i.e., radiophobia.7 The Japan Atomic Energy Agency also has been holding “Gathering[s] to Answer Questions on Radiation” for teachers and parents of pre-schoolers and primary and secondary school students since July 2011. These continue to this day.8 Powerpoint slides used at JAEA gatherings make clear that the sessions are designed to encourage teachers and parents not to worry. All of these occasions have functioned to disseminate a distorted message about the “safety” of radiation exposure. NPO Human Rights.."

  • jackassrig

    Five stages of a project.

    1 Euphoria and Excitement

    2. Disenchantment

    3. Search for the Guilty

    4. Punishment of the Innocent

    5. Reward for the Uninvolved

    I think we may be at stage 3.

  • Jebus Jebus

    It's the blame game, discredit the workers before anything happens…
    It is how the industry treats the human factor. Humans are disposable.
    preeeciousss nuclear…

    from above:
    "Worries about radiation exposure aren’t overwhelmingly prevalent among the TEPCO workers, both doctors say, although some workers are concerned, especially those with higher exposure counts."

    Bullshit, they are coerced, belittled, threatened, and abused in criminal ways. And then they are disposed of…

    Nuclear power plants: A hidden world of untruths, unethical behavior

    While he was well aware of the dangers of radiation, the man said: "If we diligently carried the dosimeter, we would not be able to work at nuclear plants because we would very quickly (reach the radiation level limit). We had no choice because we had to make a living."

    At the same time, the man said, "Nuclear plants would not operate unless there were people like me willing to sacrifice their lives."


    This happens everywhere in the world of nuclear…

  • SusanS

    ☢ Japan Needs Worldwide Help NOW! ☢
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