Crippled nuke plant not prepared for heavy rain, wind — TEPCO: We apologize for lack of significant measures

Published: May 28th, 2011 at 5:48 pm ET


Crippled nuke plant not prepared for heavy rain, wind, Kyodo, May 28, 2011:

[…] Heavy rain has been forecast for the areas from Sunday to Monday due to the season’s second typhoon, Songda, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency. […]

A TEPCO official said, “We have made utmost efforts, but we have not completed covering the damaged reactor buildings. We apologize for the lack of significant measures against wind and rain.”

Goshi Hosono, a special adviser to Prime Minister Naoto Kan, told a press conference Friday that the current measures “cannot be said to be appropriate.” […]

Published: May 28th, 2011 at 5:48 pm ET


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70 comments to Crippled nuke plant not prepared for heavy rain, wind — TEPCO: We apologize for lack of significant measures

  • jump-ball

    Sandbags are good.

    • misitu

      Kind of reminds me of that apocryphal notice on the big boss’s wall that reads:
      [ PLAN AHEA]

      Or the old Irish joke:
      ‘A visitor to Ireland became lost when driving the back roads of Galway. Spotting a local farmer, he inquired: “Can you tell me how to get to Dublin?”

      To which the farmer replied, “If I wanted to go to Dublin, I wouldn’t start from here!”’

  • Jeremie

    Look like for once they tell the truth!

  • Radiation Moon

    Evan in Babylon it became apparent ….

    COMMERCE is our MOTTO,

    More human, than human.

    The lords of technology,
    no longer consider you
    to be,

    their asset.

  • ormus

    Maybe the Typhoon will cool the reactors, but the concrete pumps might fall down. The storm track will take the radiation north to Alaska. If there is a large release from the storm hitting the nuclear plant, than I would watch where this particular storm as it will bring radiation with it. The jet stream will send the radiation storm into Canada and possibly down into the plains states where radioactive tornados might develop again in the plain states. People of the world need to march the streets, and organize the world to remove the nuclear industry, and develop clean energy.

    • Radioactive tornadoes – what if that is the *out of control* potential of radiation on the loose? What about then, is there the possibility(?) of radioactive hurricanes?
      Brutal and worst than a bad sci fi scenario. I sure hope this is not the truth.

    • Cuica

      You are so right…and the sooner we do that the sooner we can get on with saving what’s left of this planet….ps it’s going FAST!
      If we wait much longer nothing will need saving….imagine if we had united after the BP spill and said…knock off the frac drilling, no deep drilling and turn off the reators…we might have a few bumps to get over but nothing like the bumps we are facing now!!!!

  • tokyosamurai

    rainy season/typhoons always come around late may and end around mid July every year in Japan. I have lived in Japan 9 years and this was always the pattern give or take a week.
    TEPCO and anyone else who lives in Japan knows about this. These preparations should have been made already.

  • tony wilson

    at what point does an apology turn into shame.followed by a live video feed of a mass government and tepco ritual suicide.
    better still set up the toy camera robots and send them for a swim in the troubled cooling ponds.

  • steve

    No worries TEPCO. These things happen. Who could have foreseen such an event with Typhoon season upon us. Keep doing what you are doing…great job all around. Idiots.

  • willow

    My concern is that the damaged reactor buildings, especially tipping reactor 4, might fall apart due to heavy rain and winds. Then the unprotected fuel rods would be all over the ground, making it unable for any kind of human approach to the site, and all will be doomed(sooner than expected?)

    • jump-ball

      Well, if this isn’t the perfect storm developing, what is? After finishing this I’m going out to get the weekend’s popcorn and drink supply.

      Could storm damage to 4’s huge spent fuel pool and consequent scattering of the rods and increased radiation have been avoided if those rods had been dry-casked in Mar-May?

      If that could have been done, but was declined on the basis of possibly cooling and saving these GEo-bomb reactors, I hope the victimized Japanese civilians finally take matters into their own hands and give a view of mass-exodus, store-shelf-emptying and anarchical self-preservation that the criminally lame print and broadcast media can no longer ignore.

      • God reading that made my stomach turn – the dry casking idea….it would be unfathomable at the moment for additional huge fumbles to have happened in the time before even our own eyes. Too much to stomach for me to remain feeling normal and okay. I still think reality is the last few months the plant was unapproachable in truth, too HOT since the meltdown back in MARCH and the ones SINCE – so nobody could have taken out a paperclip I`d bet within a quarter mile of the plants parking lot. That will probably be the fuller truth of the media suppression in some way.

        • jump-ball

          A: You may be right, but they do have the cranes and equipment that lifted and moved the rods from other reactors and re-inserted them into the #4 pool, don’t they, plus the 4 remote-controllable Putzmeister pumping cranes that could possibly have been modified to move rods without human exposure.

          France reprocesses all their spent rods (at a mere 6% added cost to the consumer), as well as rods from I believe Germany and other countries.

          Accumulating spent rods in Japan, the U.S. and elsewhere, except France, is the handiwork of Jimmah Carter’s 1979 non-proliferation inspired decision to DEFUND the already-passed congressional re-processing bill, along with GE’s promotion of the 6% reprocessing saving by way of convincing all involved of the never-ending efficacy of forever kicking the spent rod contamination issue down the nuclear road.

          If mother nature tomorrow or Monday topples #4 throwing those rods around to dry out and start sparkling on the adjacent contryside it will reaffirm my continued belief that mankind, and in this case, the smartest engineering braniacs in the nuclear ‘room’, do swim regularly in the Sea of Knowledge, emerging completely dry.

        • misitu

          And the runner up is: ?

        • Pragmatist

          I agree with you Anthony. My strong suspicion is the site (in particular the buildings) was not prepared to deal with typhoon season because it was impossible to do so. The reason being that the radiation levels, especially above the reactor buildings, were too high for humans or machines to even begin to prepare them for such conditions.

          As part of the – ‘If the public knew the full truth there would be massive panic, so that must be avoided with every effort’ – policy, it’s better for the officials to look like idiots. So, they claim, or insinuate, that a situation like this was an oversight. When in reality the lack of action in this case is just more evidence of how grim the situation is.

          • Pragmatist

            BTW, I do think there’s massive evidence of incompetence being shown too. I just don’t believe that’s the story here. Even the biggest idiot at Tepco, or the Japanese government, had to be aware of this looming problem with its potentially disastrous consequences.

          • Agreed – lesser of two evils philosophy. Out of fairness, this is a horrible crisis to manage to be sure.

            Someone had posted that link where the official literally stopped from breaking down in tears while delivering a live message of **Things are rather stable right now**

            His body language official tells me nothing under his awareness is stable right now. He didn’t make apologies in his speech… he didn’t have to say a word.

            Take care.

  • lifeofbrian

    “We have made utmost efforts, but we have not completed covering the damaged reactor buildings

    im lost it sounds like more bs.what exactly does that mean tepco?
    dosent look like youve even started never mind finished.these guys are full of bs


    SHOCKING!! tepco, government officials, scientific fenderheads, are found to be unprepared! JUST SHOCKING!!!

  • Manifest Irony

    TEPCO has been prepared for absolutely nothing throughout the accidents:
    Loss of offsite power: unprepared.
    Lack of radiation monitoring equipment: unprepared.
    Tsunami response: unprepared.
    Loss of Diesel backup generators: unprepared
    Leaks of radioactive water: unprepared
    Meltdowns in three cores: unprepared.
    Dealing with hydrogen explosions: unprepared
    Keeping the spent fuel cool: unprepared
    etc., etc.

    I am not at all surprised that they are unprepared for some wind and rain.

  • lifeofbrian

    just like there stupid idea of putting tents over the dam complex.i mean seriously what the hell will that do?most of the radiation is now underground and will rise up anyway through soil etc.what a dumb idea

  • SteveMT

    For over two months TEPCO deliberately withheld information from the public that multiple meltdowns had occurred in the Fukushima reactors. Now, they are pre-apologizing for typhoon season, which is a pre-known annual time of storms, in Japan. This is not a good omen, but I guess you could say that this company is learning from the past.

    Why not pre-evacuate some people from Fukushima NOW, in anticipation of a big storm hitting an already critical nuclear power plant? I hope this is already occurring. Have these people ever played chess?

  • Dr. Strangleglove

    Ah so, you screwed, so sorry…


    tepco scientist/physicist critical thinking/problem solving…lets see results of flooding bld. 4 spent fuel pool with thousands of tons of water,…fooding of building and erosion of building foundation leading to building instability and colapse?…noo, ahh..masive release of contaminated water directly into pacific ocean?…noo, ahh..safely cooling spent fuel pool… check..problem solved!

  • lifeofbrian

    i have to say i dont like the chances of the fuel pool in 4 if its a big storm.its totally out in the open.i feel its going to get ripped out or very badly damaged in such a storm.

    • In the *leaner*, right?

      • lifeofbrian

        YES LEANER.there cant be much holding that together now i reckon

        • jump-ball

          Tell me if I’m seeing the ‘leaning’ tower of Daiichi, #4, ready to collapse right now, before the cyclone winds arrive.

          I went to see the live cam view at:

          Then I right-clicked and saved the image to my windows picture and fax viewer, then I pulled up the picture and zoomed in 7 times.

          In the foreground is #4, with an apparent, horrendous, downward pitch of 15 deg. plus, toward the ocean and to the right.

          Am I seeing this correctly? Is there some optical or atmospheric interpretation that explains the 2 sides and roof of that building, heavy as it is, looking ready to fall even now without being hit by anything, let alone a cyclone?

          Or do I need more popcorn and better wine?

          • Manifest Irony

            More popcorn and wine…I saved the picture too because that might be the last time you see it, steaming away. The tropical storm is forecast to turn off shore south of Fukushima, so that’s a break. Still will have some high wind gusts and plenty of rain on the site. Whether Unit 4 still stands afterward is anyone’s guess. Major complication is any radioactive releases will be directed inland by the storm, potentially further than before.

        • jump-ball

          Repeating my procedures above, the view is much darker now than 45 minutes ago, and the sideward and downward pitch of the building is not at all as evident, even though the Fuku morning light should be getting brighter.

          I’m going to compare views every 30 minutes, and will post when a clearer view of the ‘leaning tower of Daiichi 4’ is more evident.

  • That PIC was from the 27th,…didn’t I read that they expected it to weaken to a cat 3? And, shouldn’t it be hitting right about now?

  • Judge H. O.

    ” … apologize for the lack of significant measures …”
    I am so very tired of these non-stop “apologies”. There can be no apology for being party to the playing-with-high-explosives called the “nuclear power industry”. This sounds precisely the same as BP during the months-long mile-deep gusher in the Gulf of Mexico punctuated by failed attempts at control. All along the way we were asked to thank them because, as they repeated often, they were staging the largest-ever response to an environmental disaster. As if the limited effort of a for-profit company should ever be accepted as sufficient. TEPCO and the Japanese government have done a masterful job of numbing the global public; this ongoing event hasn’t been reported in many weeks yet the site continues to spew radioactive contamination worldwide. Yes, I am exhausted after two months – but that is no excuse to look away. It is no time to do anything short of direct actions to shut the entire industry down.

    [In recognition of the nature of people in the societies responsible for this horror show, the only ones who could perform the necessary direct actions, such a shutdown will not happen. Period]

  • lifeofbrian

    i remember that youtube video that had a tepco guy having to read out the latest on radiation and he was crying all through it as he was being made to lie.i felt sorry for that guy.

    • I agree, if anyone still doubts there is a disaster, check the video at 55 seconds. The official cannot hide his true fear, feelings and regret in body language or facial grimace as he delivers *everything is stable*. For me, this video visually says it all.

  • Mezz

    Japan government has failed their citizens and is poisoning the globe. TEPCO is Japan. Why are the Japanese citizens not out in the streets protesting?

    • misitu

      They are out in the streets – shopping, going to/from work, cinema, tasty sushi N salad – trying to find the off switch for the FUKUSHIMA GAME app on their mePhones

  • Powerful typhoon approaching Kyushu region

    Sunday 29th May, 06:40 AM JST


    TOKYO —

    A powerful typhoon passed the Sakishima Islands in Okinawa Prefecture early Sunday, threatening to bring further heavy rains to Kyushu Sunday afternoon, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

    The weather agency issued warnings about landslides and river floods as the typhoon could activate the rain front and cause heavy rain in wide areas of Japan, including Shinmoe Peak, a volcano that recently erupted in Kyushu, and northeastern Japan hit by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

    As of 6 a.m. Sunday, Typhoon Songda, the second typhoon this year, was located about 30 kilometers west-northwest of Kumejima Island, around 100 km west of Okinawa Island. It was traveling northeast at a speed of 40 km per hour.

    With the storm’s atmospheric pressure at 950 hectopascals near its center, the maximum wind speeds near there were 216 kph, and areas within a 130 km radius were tossed by heavy winds, the agency said.

    Heavy rainfalls of 50-70 millimeters per hour are expected in areas from Okinawa to eastern Japan Sunday with thunderstorms, it said.

  • coot

    Sounds like things are too hot for people to get close enough to do anything. Water on the floor of R2 (I believe) maxed out a meter at 1,000 milli-beques (or however you spell it). This is so f’ing bad….

  • SteveMT

    BBC: Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan ‘unready for typhoon’
    28 May 2011 Last updated at 19:24 ET

    Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear plant is not fully prepared for heavy rain and winds of a typhoon heading towards the country, officials admit.

    Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco), which runs the plant, said some reactor buildings were uncovered, prompting fears the storm may carry radioactive material into the air and sea.

    Typhoon Songda is expected to hit Japan as early as Monday.

    Fukushima was heavily damaged by the deadly 11 March quake and tsunami.
    ‘Inappropriate measures’

    More at:

  • SteveMT

    Here is some good news from TEPCO. Hopefully, this will help to be more prepared from the approaching Typhoon.d

    Cooling systems restored for fuel pools
    Sunday, May 29, 2011 05:08 +0900 (JST)

    The operator of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has now successfully restored cooling systems to the spent fuel pools of reactors 1, 2, 3 and 4.

    On Saturday, TEPCO injected about 5 tons of water to the spent fuel pool of reactor 1 on a test basis. It was the last system to be restored.

  • Pragmatist

    Japanese culture attributes much of its reason for existing as an independent nation to the fact that a ‘divine wind’ wiped out a massive Chinese invasion force centuries ago. Now all these years later how surreal it will be if instead of being saved they are destroyed by a ‘divine wind’.

    • Pragmatist

      I just thought of one more ‘divine wind’ connect to this situation. The Japanese called their suicide planes ‘kamikazes’ which translates as ‘divine wind’. The use of which showed a careless disregard for individual human life. In a similar vein, one can argue that the handling of the Fukushima disaster has shown an equivalent disregard by the Japanese.

  • Typhoon Songda Weakens, Set to Miss Fukushima, Agency Says
    By Masumi Suga – May 28, 2011 7:35 PM PT

    Typhoon Songda is weakening and expected to pass to the south of Japan, avoiding the crippled nuclear plant in Fukushima prefecture.

    • SteveMT

      That is good news, I think.

      I hope that the high ocean water from this passing typhoon will not trigger another earthquake on the fault line.

      There are so many possibilities for disaster to consider.

  • Dr. Strangleglove

    Earthquake, tsunami, now typhoon…
    Good Grief,what’s next-the rapture?

  • blackmoon

    Here is the latest interview with Geo-Scientist Leuren Moret from May 20. People, she is the ONLY SCIENTIST who is telling us the COMPLETE TRUTH.


    Fukushima Tectonic Nuclear Warfare Monitored By World Haarp Partners.

    In a few of her interviews and lectures, Leuren Moret said that Fukushima’s control center was infected with the StucksNet virus, to insure that this HAARP generated EVENT would have the maximum impact.

    Here in some info on the StucksNet virus, and judge for yourself.

    The article is titled – World encounters a new type of global terrorism.

  • blackmoon

    We discuss a lot of HEAVY topics here and sometime we might experience negative overload.
    For those of you who might like a SPIRITUAL interlude, I think that you might find this video SPIRTUALLY UPLIFTING.

  • blackmoon

    Dr. Rima Laibow from the Natural Solutions Foundation, discusses Fukushima:

    Here she gives information on how to protect ourselves from radiation: