TEPCO Downplayed Risk

Monday, October 15, 2012 @ 05:10 PM gHale

TEPCO, the operator of the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant, said it played down the risks of a tsunami to the facility for fear of the financial and regulatory costs.

The admission is one of the starkest yet by Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), which is getting criticism for shirking responsibility for the worst nuclear disaster in a generation.

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The report said before the huge waves of March 2011 smashed into the plant the company was aware defenses against natural disasters were not sufficient, but did not act because of the possible consequences.

“There was a latent fear that plant shutdown would be required until severe accident measures were put in place,” TEPCO said in a report.

The company document, entitled “Fundamental Policy for the Reform of TEPCO Nuclear Power Organization” said there was insufficient planning to prepare for a natural disaster at the plant.

“There was concern that if new severe accident measures were implemented, it could spread concern in the community that there is a problem with the safety of current plants.”

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