(Subscription Only) Title: TEPCO subcontractor used lead to fake dosimeter readings at Fukushima plant
Source: AJW by The Asahi Shimbun
Authors: Jun Sato, Chiaki Fujimori, Miki Aoki, Tamiyuki Kihara and Takayuki Kihara
Date: July 21, 2012
Workers at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant were ordered to cover their dosimeters with lead plates to keep radiation doses low enough to continue working under dangerous conditions, the Asahi Shimbun has learned.
the man in charge, a senior official of a subcontractor of Tokyo Electric Power Co., warned them that they would lose their jobs–and any chance of employment at other nuclear plants–if they failed to comply.
A number of the workers explained the process in detail. And one of them provided The Asahi Shimbun with a recording of a meeting the Build-Up foreman had with defiant workers on the night of Dec. 2
He ordered the workers to draw lines on the plate and cut out pieces using special scissors. The workers then used vises and hammers to reshape the pieces so that they would cover the front, sides and bottom of their personal dosimeters.
Another worker gave his opinion: “I think this is almost a crime.”
The foreman retorted: “Did I ever coerce you? I am just saying, ‘Please do it if you can convince yourself to do it for your own sake.’”
Once inside the Build-Up vehicle, each worker would be given a lead cover. The workers were to rip their protection suits, cover their personal dosimeters with the lead sheaths and cover the tears in their protective suits with tape.
“Make sure nobody sees what you are doing,” he told each worker. “Did you understand? You’ll do so, won’t you?”
Another interesting quote from the foreman: “You can’t live by nuclear plants around the year unless you take care of your own radiation doses.”
Published: July 21st, 2012 at 2:53 pm ET