Title: Book reveals human drama in Fukushima No. 1 crisis
Source: The Japan Times
Author: KAZUAKI NAGATA
Date: Dec. 11, 2012
[...] Freelance journalist Ryusho Kadota, author of the book “Shi no Fuchi wo Mita Otoko: Yoshida Masao to Fukushima Daiichi Genpatsu no 500 Nichi” (“A Man Who was on the Brink of Death: Masao Yoshida and the Fukushima No. 1 Plant’s 500 Days”), managed to interview more than 90 people involved in the containment effort and their family members, Self-Defense Forces personnel and others. [...]
Initially, the government and Tokyo Electric Power Co. tried to play down the magnitude of the crisis. But from the moment Yoshida learned that a monster tsunami had knocked out the emergency diesel generators needed to keep the reactor cores cool, there was only one thing on his mind — that the Fukushima crisis had the potential to be far worse than the Chernobyl disaster in the old Soviet Union.
“If you simply calculate it, you can see (the magnitude of the disaster) would be 10 times more serious than Chernobyl. We kept coping with the situation with that in our mind,” Yoshida is quoted in the book as saying.
If any one of the primary containment vessels had exploded, massive amounts of radioactive material would have been released, and all nine of the other reactors at No. 1 and the nearby Fukushima No. 2 plant would have been unapproachable, Yoshida said.
All 10 would have suffered meltdowns, contaminating the environment far more than the Chernobyl accident did, Yoshida said. [...]
Just focusing on Reactor No. 2′s containment vessel: NHK: "The unimaginable was happening" -- Workers say part of Reactor 2 containment vessel destroyed -- After alarming pressure readings, "we heard a loud bang... pressure is now zero" (VIDEO)
- Alarming and no good news
- Unidentified Tepco Employee: Total despair
- Then at 6a March 15, an explosion
- Check drywell and suppression chambers… What’s the pressure?
- The pressure was zero
- Front line workers thought part of the containment vessel had been destroyed
- “We heard a loud bang”
Published: December 11th, 2012 at 12:07 am ET