Reuters interviews Fukushima worker: “I get stomach aches… They should give us a medal” — NHK: Thick steel plates cover ground due to radioactive substances

Published: March 5th, 2013 at 7:39 pm ET


Reuters, March 5, 2013: Front-line workers, who spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity, complain about working in the stifling protective gear, the relatively low pay, loneliness – and stress. […] “I get stomach aches. I am constantly stressed. When I’m back in my room, all I can do is worry about the next day,” added the worker, employed by a small subcontractor. “They should give us a medal.” […] signs of potential shortages are evident, partly because workers are “burning out” by reaching their radiation limits.

NHK WORLD, March 5, 2013: NHK reporters have visited the crippled Fukushima Daiichi power plant nearly 2 years after the nuclear accident. They walked near the plant’s No. 1 reactor building for 10 minutes on Tuesday. They were the first news media members to be allowed to enter the area, on condition that their radiation exposure be monitored strictly. […] Four-centimeter-thick steel plates had been put on the ground to protect staff from radioactive substances.

See also: [intlink id=”journalists-tour-fukushima-parking-lot-areas-contaminated-told-stay-metal-plates-radiation-shielded” type=”post”]{{empty}}[/intlink]

Published: March 5th, 2013 at 7:39 pm ET


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32 comments to Reuters interviews Fukushima worker: “I get stomach aches… They should give us a medal” — NHK: Thick steel plates cover ground due to radioactive substances

  • Mack Mack

    From the article:

    "As of the end of December 2012, 146 Tepco workers and 21 contract workers had exceeded the maximum permissible exposure of 100 millisieverts in five years, Tepco data showed."

    No one really knows how many workers have exceeded the maximum permissible exposure, because —>

    "TEPCO fails to submit dose data on 21,000 Fukushima plant workers"

  • PurpleRain PurpleRain

    At least they did give the Chernobyl liquidators medals…. something they could believe in and something they could share with pride with their families, but I guess cheap medals are TOO MUCH TO ASK FOR FROM JAPAN!~

    • They did far more than that… a certification of the job that equated to free medical care for life, and welfare when they couldn't work any longer.

      THAT !! Is what matters in the long-haul. They didn't toss them into the trash, even though they DID lie to them about true amounts of rads they took on board. 1,500 each trip to the area.

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    Man-made nuclear reactors, ruining life and country. What a waste.

  • Idiocracy

    Aren't you guys sick and tired of this endless circle jerk enenews has you in? In 9 days will be the 2 years "anniversary" of this "level 7 ines" accident, and what is its legacy: 0 deaths caused by radiation (including the fabled Fukushima 50); an endless steam of "news" of certain death, bio-accumulation, compromised food chain and so on and so forth. Where is the radiation poisoning, where are the cancers (even in that village that is in Dai-chi's back door, where is the corrium hitting the water table, where is the reactor 4 SFP collapsing?
    Have you guys stopped and thought even for a minute if this nuclear accident is real or not? Have you ever wondered why was enenews setup in the first place and how was it all ready to go, just as the "tragedy" was unfolding?

    Did i mentioned that i was also a firm believer in this accident and i was terrified about its consequences? I have also followed enenews since march 2011 (i've quit in the spring of 2012) and totally bought into it, until i started asking the questions i've presented to your consideration. After weighing the evidence i became free of this phobia and found no evidence to support this "tragedy".

    Anyways, these were my 2 cents and if i offended any of you in any way i apologize in advance.


    • Sickputer

      I was wondering when critiques of pro-nukers was going to bring out the list attacks.

      The truth hurts for the nucleocrats. If they were not so desperate they would be sitting smug and silent.

      Hey idiocracy (or Rod or Will or whoever you are).. Take a trip over to Fukushima Prefecture and spew your nonsense to the mothers of the tens of thousands of sick children. They will beat you to death with a Tepco safety manual.

      Go away to your endless pursuit of moon landing hoaxes and alt.flame.

    • fuganzi

      I agree with you.

      I want to see nuclear power dismanlted as much as anyone here.
      I see these reports of leakage and contamination, (etc) – and I can't imagine how it is possible that there aren't tens of thousands of dead people over there already. I can't imagine that Japan's medical establishment isn't crushed under the weight of patients, and that this isn't a #1 daily headline if that were so. The costs of these medical treatments – stacked up against the relatively anaemic profits of the industry? come on.

      All we've seen is the elevated rate of thyroid abnormalities. Anybody studying that? WTF?

      Then these figures of increased deaths in the US. . . *nothing* in the normal US media? Not a peep, (other than the spike in infant mortality – that went down after 1 month – now it's just considered an outlier).

      Where are these mothers of tens of thousands of sick children? I see stories of one or two women interviewed in a speciality-press. Don't these women have access to Facebook? Twitter? G+? I know how Chinese media censorship works, I find it hard to believe this happens in Japan.

      So basically – On the expected illnesses and deaths: it's been 2 years. Where's the science? That's all I'm asking. I'm an equal-opportunity sceptic.

      Chernobyl slipped right past us, and nobody believes THAT was a horrible disaster either.

      • where's the science…? Ask the CDC.!! They have placed a lock-down on all data past 2009 due to how bad it's become here in the USA !!

        WAKE YOUR ASS UP !!

        • Mack Mack

          It will be interesting to hear what comes out of the Fukushima Symposium, March 11 and 12.

          Since none of the speakers receive paychecks from the nuclear industry, I believe we'll get a much clearer view of what's really happening in Fukushima regarding health and the environment.

          Confirmed speakers:

          Confirmed speakers include:

          Dr. Tim Mousseau, Professor of Biological Sciences, University of South Carolina – Chernobyl, Fukushima and Other Hot Places, Biological Consequences

          Ken Buesseler, Marine Scientist, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute –Consequences for the Ocean of the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant Accident

          David Lochbaum, The Union of Concerned Scientists – Another Unsurprising Surprise

          Dr. Wladimir Wertelecki, President of the Board, OMNI-Net Ukraine Child Development Programs (current). Professor of Biomedical Anthropology (Adjunct) Graduate Program in Biomedical Anthropology, State University of New York at Binghamton, NY (2011-). Former Chair of the Department of Medical Genetics and Birth Defects, University of South Alabama, 1974-2010 – Congenital Malformations in Rivne Polossia and the Chernobyl Accident

          Dr. Marek Niedziela, Professor of Pediatrics, Poznan (Poland) University of Medical Sciences – Thyroid Pathology in Children with Particular Reference to Chernobyl and Fukushima

          Dr. Alexy Yablokov, Russian Academy of Sciences – Lessons from Chernobyl

          • Mack Mack

            Akio Matsumura, Founder of the Global Forum of Spiritual and Parliamentary Leaders – What did the World Learn from the Fukushima Accident?

            Robert Alvarez, Senior Scholar, Institute for Policy Studies, formerly of DoE – Management of Spent Fuel Pools and Radioactive Waste

            Arnie Gundersen, Nuclear Engineer, Fairewinds Associates – What Did They Know and When Did They Know It?

            Dr. David Brenner, Higgins Professor Radiation Biophysics, College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University – Mechanistic Models for Effects of Ionizing Radiation on Living Systems

            Dr. Steven Wing, Associate Professor Epidemiology, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University North Carolina – Epidemiologic studies of radiation releases from nuclear facilities: Lessons past and present.

            Steven Starr, Senior Scientist, Physicians for Social Responsibility, Clinical Laboratory Science Program Director, University of Missouri – The implications of the massive contamination of Japan with radioactive cesium

            David Freeman, Engineer and Attorney, Former Chairman of TVA, Office of Science and Technology in charge of energy and the environment in the Johnson White House, and for 2 years under Nixon –The Rise and Fall of Nuclear Power

            • Mack Mack

              Dr. Ian Fairlie, Radiation Biologist and Independent Consultant on Radiation Risks, Former Scientific Secretary to UK Government’s Committee Examining Radiation Risks from Internal Emitters – The Nuclear Disaster at Fukushima: Nuclear Source Terms, Initial Health Effects

              Andrew S. Kanter, MD MPH FACMI, Immediate Past-President of Physicians for Social Responsibility – Moderator, Health Effects Panel.

              Dr. Hisako Sakiyama, Doctor of Medicine, Former Senior Researcher in National Institute Radiological Sciences, Member of Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigative Commission – Risk Assessment of Low Dose Radiation in Japan; What Became Clear to The National Diet of Japan Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission

              Dr. Herbert Abrams, Stanford University, Emeritus Professor Radiology, Stanford University, Member Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation Committee National Academy Sciences (BEIR V11) – "The Hazards of Low-level Ionizing Radiation: Controversy and Evidence."

              Kevin Kamps, Specialist in High Level Waste Management and Transportation, Beyond Nuclear – Seventy Years of Radioactive Risks in Japan and America

              Joseph Mangano, Executive Director, Radiation and Public Health Project, speaking on a new article about increases in newborn hypothyroidism.

              Mary Olson, Nuclear Information and Resource Service, Southeast – Gender Matters in the Atomic Age

              • Mack Mack

                Cindy Folkers, Radiation and Health Specialist, Beyond Nuclear – Post-Fukushima Food Monitoring

                Hiroaki Koide, Master of Nuclear Engineering, Kyoto University Research Reactor Institute (KURRI), Specialist of Radiation Safety and Control.

                Dr. Helen Caldicott, Founding President Physicians for Social Responsibility – The Nuclear Age and Future Generations


                • Mack Mack

                  Fukushima Symposium being broadcast LIVE, too:

                  Update: Live stream link will be:


                  We are very pleased to offer the live stream, and have gone great effort to have it done professionally to enable clear viewing and remote events. It will be free to all, but we ask that those who feel this was a valuable service consider making a donation through the Donate Now button on our website. If everyone who asked for and watches the live stream donated even just $5 it would help to pay for having it done by an expert team, and indexed and put back on line after as a permanent reference. Thanks for joining us from home, to those who cannot join us in person.

      • Idiocracy

        First of all sorry for replaying so late. Let me tell you how convinced o was of the reality of the Fukushima "disaster": for 18 months i quit eating any dairy products (except butter and cheese made prior to March 2011), seafood (except canned before the "accident") and avoided as much as possible staying outdoors. I have also talked my wife into doing the same (she agreed) and have kept our kid indoors until start of June 2011.

        After a while, via some discoveries i've made concerning the lies we're fed (in other areas), i've started questioning everything, that led me to questioning this disaster also. Long story short, after checking the pre and post Fukushima alpha, gama and background radiation reading for my country and also of all countries i could get data on i started to doubt it. Finally i made the connection (i was reading enenews daily at that time) between the large doses of radiation, cesium, strontium, plutonium etc lying around Japan and presumably all over the earth and the lack of illness/deaths. The final straw was the news that the Fukushima 50 are all well and dandy and they were all considered kamikaze in March of 2011.
        Since that day i started eating normally and never looked back. However, i wanted to share my story and opinion with you guys and look for clues or confirmation whether i am right or wrong. What can i say, the welcome was not quite what i was expecting but i did everything in good faith.

        Anyways, sorry for the wall of…

  • Idiocracy

    Hello "Sickputer",

    Have you read all my message? If so, how am i a shill for pro-nuckers, as you put it? Have you overlooked the part where i mentioned that i too was a "believer" (and for how long)?

    As in regards to taking a trip to the Dai-chi surrounding area, i admit that i did not undertook such a trip. Did you? Where are these tens of thousands of sick children? Care to provide a link?

    In regards to chasing me away, why is that? Have i touched a nerve with my questions? I would really appreciate a fact based rebuttal concerning my allegations, not hollow name calling and pathetic attempts of discrediting via proxy (moon landing hoaxes et all).

    Have you also overlooked my closing statement of apologizing in advance if i hurt someone with my questions and "hypotheses"?

    Anyways, i do look for a honest discussion but i guess we have started on the wrong foot, and imho it wasn't due to a fault on my part.

    Cheers and looking forward to hear from you!

    • weeman

      I agree you must debate all aspects and form your own opinion based on data and your opinion is as relevant as ours without concrete data to prove other wise, but I believe they are hold data back and manipulation of data. In a democracy it is your right to disagree.

  • Sickputer

    I have no additional discussion for your original post…your allegations speak volumes for your intent and need no more rebuttal from me.

  • Idiocracy

    How can you say that without providing any evidence to back up your stance? In my humble opinion it was you that refused to have a honest debate, on a public forum, but as i cannot force you (and i do not believe in forcing anything on anyone) into a debate, i bid you farewell.

    Have a very good day!


      suppose rectal bleeding isn't enough 'prodding' to how screwed things are, for some of us…

  • Sickputer

    This Burma version of the Reuters article has a photo of workers outside J-Village.

    Love those high tech masks! 🙂

    My favorite paragraph: "Fukushima Daiichi plant sits like a carbuncle on Japan’s northeast coast 240 km (150 miles) from Tokyo. Its damaged reactors still seep radiation, although at a rate of 10 million Becquerel per hour for cesium versus about 800 trillion right after the disaster."

    SP: Let's see…their Tepco estimate (usually bogus lowball, but let's run with it) is 1 billion becquerels leaking every 4 days. Think about another 100 years at that rate.

    Will the last mutant of Japan in 2113 please turn off the lights before you leave?
    Thank you.

  • Sickputer

    Decommissioning retired US nuclear power plants usually goes pretty straight forward. Put the cooled rods (10 years of cooling) into steel and concrete casks. Tear down the reactor buildings and haul them away to Hanford Site (sorry west coast folks).

    But what happens when the fuel rods are melted sludge and the runaway cores have sunk beneath the reactor buildings (several of them). And explosions threw plutonium debris all across the complex?
    Robots can't even survive in the buildings.

    Would you volunteer to work there for $9 an hour?

  • 16Penny 16Penny

    I would in a heartbeat if I knew I was near the end of the road anyway. Your talking about a chance to save the planet. I agree, shut them all down but you showed, it is too late to just shut these ones down.

    I think there needs to be a concerted world effort to get this decontaminated as much as possible. I would like to see some major relocating going on and free passage given to the citizens.

  • We have a corium that hit the subduction zone, and went BANG!. Caused an earthquake, and opened more fissures… leading to situation we now have of radioactive out-gassing from fissures as far off-site as 60 km. The geological folks in Japan have repentantly stated that the plate that the Fukushima plants sits on is "Crumbling" and then refused to explain what they meant by that statement. The site now has 3 rather large fissures running through it… one of them runs right under the #5 reactor! It then goes down through the dry cask storage building… it ate more than half the cars that were in the parking-lot there of.
    Our new standard eruption events…:

    He made the statement on but it was a while back. Good luck with back-dated stuff… they are actively deleting stuff and changing even posted links.

    the coriums will never be gone.. and now can't be contained.

    the explosion of #3 that all witnessed was the PU-breeder rods in the pool going up. One min less than 24 hrs after that… the second explosion… was the corium blasting its way out the basement.

    The point I'm trying to make here, is that they have no common sense control over what they are doing there. The Soviets DID have a clue, and did what could be done… though now it seems that the sand-turned-glass encasement trick only lasts about 30 years before it turns to powder.

    Now lets move to Hanford. They are spending time building a…

  • the coriums will never be gone.. and now can't be contained.

    the explosion of #3 that all witnessed was the PU-breeder rods in the pool going up. One min less than 24 hrs after that… the second explosion… was the corium blasting its way out the basement.

    The point I'm trying to make here, is that they have no common . They are spending time building a glassification plant that will not work as a long-term solution like they have claimed… while more and more Plutonium leaks out of the tanks into the ground.

    At what point does all this nuclear BS have to stop?

  • Now add in the new evidence out of Chernobyl that even GLASS encasement turns to dust before the 30 years mark…?

    The entire glassification process they are build out at Hanford is now known to be a farce! It doesn't work long term!

    It cost the team the lives of 2 men to gather this information.

    SO..?! We are now back to square one with not one damned thing we know of to contain it over the long term

    Report Comment

    PattieB PattieB
    March 6, 2013 at 5:40 pm · Reply

    So… setting aside the entire issue of what it's doing to the genetics of all carbon life…? WE HAVE NO SOLUTION to what is to be done with waste that can kill every living thing!


    The vitrification and storage in glass last at most 30 years!

    The stuff needs 241,000 years of containment!

    Are we GETTING the POINT across YET!?