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Fukushima chief was pleading for help from U.S. military: “Fire’s broken out at Reactor 4… We can’t do anything… please” — Leader turned pale after seeing flames and black smoke near fuel pool — Worker tries to have last meal before dying and realizes he’s unable to taste food

Kyodo News (Part 11), Sept. 28, 2014 (emphasis added): Fearing a massive discharge of radiation on March 15, 2011, Fukushima No. 1 plant chief Masao Yoshida told [the Tepco] head office in Tokyo that he had to consider evacuating the majority of on-site employees. This followed a report at 6:14 am earlier in the . . . → Read More: Fukushima chief was pleading for help from U.S. military: “Fire’s broken out at Reactor 4… We can’t do anything… please” — Leader turned pale after seeing flames and black smoke near fuel pool — Worker tries to have last meal before dying and realizes he’s unable to taste food

Accident in Reactor 3 fuel pool at Fukushima — Large piece of wreckage falls nearby spent uranium rods — M5 quake hits plant soon after — Official: “Unable to say” whether any are damaged (PHOTOS & VIDEO)

AFP, Aug 29, 2014: [TEPCO] said it had not detected any significant changes in radiation readings or in the level of pool water at the No. 3 reactor… Friday’s incident occurred shortly after noon during a remotely controlled operation to remove debris from the fuel pool at the unit where the broken reactor still . . . → Read More: Accident in Reactor 3 fuel pool at Fukushima — Large piece of wreckage falls nearby spent uranium rods — M5 quake hits plant soon after — Official: “Unable to say” whether any are damaged (PHOTOS & VIDEO)

NHK: Alarm goes off after accident at Fukushima Unit 4 fuel pool — Work suspended after crane trouble — “Workers have been monitoring radiation levels” (VIDEO)

NHK, Mar. 26, 2014: Work has been suspended to remove spent nuclear fuel from a storage pool [...] [TEPCO] said an accident occurred at around 9:30 AM on Wednesday when workers started removing fuel units at the No. 4 reactor building [...] a large crane used to hoist a cask containing 22 spent fuel . . . → Read More: NHK: Alarm goes off after accident at Fukushima Unit 4 fuel pool — Work suspended after crane trouble — “Workers have been monitoring radiation levels” (VIDEO)

Reporters reveal “blast ruined inside of containment vessel” at Fukushima Unit 4 — Walls ‘destroyed’ — Explosion was ‘believed’ to have been outside reactor (PHOTO)

Yomiuri Shimbun, Feb. 13, 2014 at 6:11a JST: Blast ruined the inside of containment vessel at Fukushima plant [...] Reporters from The Yomiuri Shimbun visited the crippled plant Wednesday [...] On the top floor of the plant’s No. 4 reactor building, a crane was moving to remove spent nuclear fuel [...] On the lower . . . → Read More: Reporters reveal “blast ruined inside of containment vessel” at Fukushima Unit 4 — Walls ‘destroyed’ — Explosion was ‘believed’ to have been outside reactor (PHOTO)

Nuclear Professors: Every engineer is really scared about fuel removal at Unit 4 — I advised gov’t to be ready to use explosives to collapse pool after 3/11 (VIDEOS)

Arirang’s ‘In Depth’, Nov. 23, 2013: […] there is mounting concern about radiation leakage caused by the Fukushima nuclear plant destruction. There is reemerged concern as Japan dismantles its nuclear plant.

Professor Suh Kune-yull, Nuclear Engineering at Seoul National University: Q: What’s the situation like in Fukushima? A: Your guess is as good as . . . → Read More: Nuclear Professors: Every engineer is really scared about fuel removal at Unit 4 — I advised gov’t to be ready to use explosives to collapse pool after 3/11 (VIDEOS)

Source: First try to remove spent fuel from Unit 4 could be next week — Nuclear Engineer: Everyone’s nervous about pulling out used rods that are corroding; Will zircoloy tubes break and spill fuel pellets, leading to a criticality? (AUDIO)

Kyodo News, Nov. 23, 2013: Work to remove used fuel at Fukushima No. 4 spent fuel pool eyed Tues. [...] Work to remove spent fuel from a storage pool inside a damaged reactor building at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex will begin on Tuesday at the earliest, a source close to the operator of . . . → Read More: Source: First try to remove spent fuel from Unit 4 could be next week — Nuclear Engineer: Everyone’s nervous about pulling out used rods that are corroding; Will zircoloy tubes break and spill fuel pellets, leading to a criticality? (AUDIO)

Nuclear Engineer: New cover on Unit 4 can trap hydrogen gas during criticality in fuel pool — Blast would be close to a nuclear explosion, from a practical standpoint (AUDIO)

Fairewinds Chief Engineer Arnie Gundersen, Nov. 19, 2013 (at 7:00 in): Modern fuel racks have boron surrounding the nuclear fuel, and the boron at Fukushima Daiich likely leached out over the last 2 years […] If the fuel gets too close to each other it can cause a chain reaction in the fuel pool.

. . . → Read More: Nuclear Engineer: New cover on Unit 4 can trap hydrogen gas during criticality in fuel pool — Blast would be close to a nuclear explosion, from a practical standpoint (AUDIO)

Damaged fuel rods are cracked and leaking radioactive gases in Fukushima Unit 4 pool; Wire appears trapped in racks — Another assembly bent when “mishandled during a transfer”

Japan Times, Nov. 14, 2013:  Earlier this week, Tepco found three damaged assemblies that will be difficult to remove, but officials said the damage appeared to have occurred before the March 11 disasters.

Reuters, Nov. 14, 2013: One of the assemblies was damaged as far back as 1982, when it was mishandled during a . . . → Read More: Damaged fuel rods are cracked and leaking radioactive gases in Fukushima Unit 4 pool; Wire appears trapped in racks — Another assembly bent when “mishandled during a transfer”

Multiple assemblies ‘deformed’ in Fukushima Unit 4 pool — One “bent at a 90-degree angle” — Tepco: Mistake occurred when handling the fuel… 25 years ago

Yomiuri Shimbun translated by EXSKF, Nov. 12, 2013: On November 12, TEPCO disclosed that there were three fuel assemblies [...] in the Spent Fuel Pool of Reactor 4 [...] that were deformed and would be difficult to remove.

Fukushima Unit 4 Spent Fuel Pool on Nov. 7, 2013 (Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg)

Fukushima Minyu translated . . . → Read More: Multiple assemblies ‘deformed’ in Fukushima Unit 4 pool — One “bent at a 90-degree angle” — Tepco: Mistake occurred when handling the fuel… 25 years ago

Reuters: Fukushima Unit 4 is “buckled and tilted and could collapse” — Bloomberg: “Engineers have been examining stability” of building, checking for “new vulnerabilities”

Reuters, Nov. 12, 2013: The urgency to clear Reactor No. 4 of the fuel assemblies is because of the risk in having spent fuel stored at such a height – some 18 meters above ground level – in a building that has buckled and tilted and could collapse if another quake strikes. Also, if . . . → Read More: Reuters: Fukushima Unit 4 is “buckled and tilted and could collapse” — Bloomberg: “Engineers have been examining stability” of building, checking for “new vulnerabilities”

Japan Expert: “All I can do is pray nothing goes wrong” at Fukushima Unit 4; Concern over “dangerous chain of events” — TV: “At least evacuate nearby residents” — NYTimes: No external supervision of Tepco; To start within 10 days (VIDEO)

New York Times, Nov. 10, 2013:

The Process

[...] In the next 10 days [Tepco] is set to start the delicate and risky task of using a crane to remove the fuel assemblies from the pool, a critical step in a long decommissioning process that has already had serious setbacks. Just 36 men will . . . → Read More: Japan Expert: “All I can do is pray nothing goes wrong” at Fukushima Unit 4; Concern over “dangerous chain of events” — TV: “At least evacuate nearby residents” — NYTimes: No external supervision of Tepco; To start within 10 days (VIDEO)

Japan Experts: “Very worried” about accident at Fukushima Unit 4; Concern fuel to be dropped, could break apart and overheat — Tepco Adviser: It’s only as hot as a ‘few toasters’

Hiromitsu Ino, professor emeritus of nuclear engineering at the University of Tokyo: The removal of the fuel assemblies is “the right thing to do, because keeping the fuel up there is quite risky,” [he] says. Among the risks he and other experts cite is the possibility that a container being used to move the . . . → Read More: Japan Experts: “Very worried” about accident at Fukushima Unit 4; Concern fuel to be dropped, could break apart and overheat — Tepco Adviser: It’s only as hot as a ‘few toasters’

Top Nuclear Official: “Very large risk potential” when attempting fuel removal at Fukushima Unit 4 pool — CNN: Debris in rods may damage Tepco’s efforts (VIDEO)

Asahi Shimbun, Nov. 7, 2013: [...] Concrete walls were still missing from the third and fourth floors of the No. 4 reactor building, raising questions among onlookers if the structure could withstand a huge earthquake. On the sea side of the building, a piping system and metal rods were exposed behind collapsed walls of . . . → Read More: Top Nuclear Official: “Very large risk potential” when attempting fuel removal at Fukushima Unit 4 pool — CNN: Debris in rods may damage Tepco’s efforts (VIDEO)

Nuclear Expert: Fuel rods are “in a jumble” at Fukushima Unit 4 pool; Unclear if they are cracked — US pressing Japan on removal, fears terrorist activity at plant (VIDEO)

Telegraph, Nov. 6, 2013: “Did you ever play pick up sticks?” asked a foreign nuclear expert who has been monitoring Tepco’s efforts to regain control of the plant. “You had 50 sticks, you heaved them into the air and than had to take one off the pile at a time. “If the pile collapsed . . . → Read More: Nuclear Expert: Fuel rods are “in a jumble” at Fukushima Unit 4 pool; Unclear if they are cracked — US pressing Japan on removal, fears terrorist activity at plant (VIDEO)

BBC: ‘Extraordinary danger’ in removing fuel from Fukushima Unit 4 — Fear that rods are damaged — Officials: “We’re not sure if they’re damaged – you never know”; Concern over “release of radiation” (VIDEO)

BBC News, Nov. 6, 2013: A task of extraordinary delicacy and danger is about to begin at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power station. [...] The fuel rods are currently in a precarious state in a storage pool in Unit 4. [...] One senior official told me: “It’s going to be very difficult but it has . . . → Read More: BBC: ‘Extraordinary danger’ in removing fuel from Fukushima Unit 4 — Fear that rods are damaged — Officials: “We’re not sure if they’re damaged – you never know”; Concern over “release of radiation” (VIDEO)

Postponed: Fuel removal attempt at Fukushima Unit 4 delayed, possibly for weeks — Gov’t safety agency wants tests conducted, as another ~M5 quake hits Eastern Japan

The Japan Times, Nov 4, 2013: Tepco to conduct fuel removal test at reactor 4 [...] Tokyo Electric Power Co. will conduct a fuel removal test at the No. 4 reactor building of the stricken Fukushima No. 1 power plant, delaying the start of the actual operation by up to two weeks, sources close . . . → Read More: Postponed: Fuel removal attempt at Fukushima Unit 4 delayed, possibly for weeks — Gov’t safety agency wants tests conducted, as another ~M5 quake hits Eastern Japan

Professor: There are fuel rods probably ‘fused’ in Fukushima Unit 4; Pool on bent legs, and lateral supports were not put in when first built — AP: International concern about “catastrophic open-air meltdown” (AUDIO)

Associated Press, Nov. 1, 2013: The [No. 4] reactor building was damaged by hydrogen explosions, and remains a source of international concern about a catastrophic open-air meltdown in case of a pool collapse, despite TEPCO’s repeated reassurance that it has reinforced the pool and that the building can withstand another major earthquake.

ABC News . . . → Read More: Professor: There are fuel rods probably ‘fused’ in Fukushima Unit 4; Pool on bent legs, and lateral supports were not put in when first built — AP: International concern about “catastrophic open-air meltdown” (AUDIO)

Top Scientist: “Fukushima is the most terrifying situation I can imagine” — I’ve seen a paper which says it’s bye-bye Japan and to evacuate N. America’s west coast if Unit 4 goes after quake and rods are exposed (VIDEO)

David Suzuki is an award-winning scientist, environmentalist and broadcaster. [...] Dr. Suzuki is a geneticist [...] He held a research associateship in the Biology Division of Tennessee’s Oak Ridge National Lab [...]

Wikipedia: Suzuki was awarded the Right Livelihood Award in 2009 [...] In 2004, David Suzuki was selected as the greatest living Canadian . . . → Read More: Top Scientist: “Fukushima is the most terrifying situation I can imagine” — I’ve seen a paper which says it’s bye-bye Japan and to evacuate N. America’s west coast if Unit 4 goes after quake and rods are exposed (VIDEO)

Nuclear Expert: Fuel rods in Fukushima Unit 4 “may not be in their original position” — Concern over “way the spent fuel is sitting in pool” (AUDIO)

Title: Up Front Source: KPFA 94.1 FM Berkeley, CA Date: October 31, 2013

At 10:00 in

Arjun Makhijani, President of IEER, Ph.D. in engineering (specialization: nuclear fusion) from UC Berkeley:

The pool is damaged; the reactor building was destroyed, and so on. Of course, it’s not simple to remove spent fuel from a pool . . . → Read More: Nuclear Expert: Fuel rods in Fukushima Unit 4 “may not be in their original position” — Concern over “way the spent fuel is sitting in pool” (AUDIO)

TV: “Japan’s worst nuclear nightmare” — Yale Professor: Removing fuel from Fukushima Unit 4 pool “has me very scared” — Tepco: “We believe it’s not dangerous” (VIDEO)

Mark Willacy, ABC News (Australia), Oct. 31, 2013: Hidden inside the twisted remains of the Fukushima reactor 4 building, and perched precariously 5 stories above the ground, is Japan’s worst nuclear nightmare. It’s a deep pool holding 1,300 used fuel assemblies [...] Tepco is finally ready to start removing this 400 tons of highly . . . → Read More: TV: “Japan’s worst nuclear nightmare” — Yale Professor: Removing fuel from Fukushima Unit 4 pool “has me very scared” — Tepco: “We believe it’s not dangerous” (VIDEO)

Expert in 2010: Megathrust quake predicted to hit Fukushima around Nov. 2013… Recurrence interval of 75 years with last rupture Nov. 1938 — Planet’s most powerful type of seismic event

Wall St. Journal, October 30, 2013 (Emphasis Added): Tepco will remove about 1,300 spent fuel rods and 200 new fuel rods [...] the 4 meter-long rods will be pulled out of the pool at a time, is considered unprecedented in its scale. Shunichi Tanaka, chairman of the Nuclear Regulation Authority, has expressed concerns about . . . → Read More: Expert in 2010: Megathrust quake predicted to hit Fukushima around Nov. 2013… Recurrence interval of 75 years with last rupture Nov. 1938 — Planet’s most powerful type of seismic event

Warning from Japan’s Top Nuclear Official: I am “much more worried” about fuel in Fukushima Unit 4 — Rods may break open and release highly radioactive material — Beware risks from debris, a disaster if damaged — Removal may start Nov. 8

Associated Press, Oct.  30, 2013: Japanese regulators on Wednesday gave final approval for the removal of fuel rods [to] start in November [...] About 200 of the rods that are unused and safer are expected to be the first [...] Nuclear regulatory chairman Shunichi Tanaka, however, warned that removing the fuel rods from Unit . . . → Read More: Warning from Japan’s Top Nuclear Official: I am “much more worried” about fuel in Fukushima Unit 4 — Rods may break open and release highly radioactive material — Beware risks from debris, a disaster if damaged — Removal may start Nov. 8