Report: Japan's 2011 Nuke Disaster Narrowly Avoided Being Much Worse

"A new independent report from Japan details just how close that country came to a "devil's chain reaction" of nuclear plant after nuclear plant melting down and sending a plume of radiation over the city of Tokyo and its 30 million inhabitants."

"Japan dodged a massive nuclear bullet last spring. That’s the conclusion of a new report out Tuesday on last year’s disaster at the country’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

The massive earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011 triggered an escalating series of alarming events at the Fukushima plant that ultimately resulted in a triple meltdown, large radiation releases from the plant’s reactors, and a massive evacuation of the surrounding area — that largely remains in place. It took weeks for engineers to gain the upper hand, and even today the plant remains only under tenuous control.

But the new report says things could’ve been much worse.

The six-month independent investigation found that government officials and even the plant’s owners were utterly unprepared for what was happening, and that their panic very nearly led to an even more massive disaster."

PRI's The World (BBC/PRI/WGBH) had the story February 28, 2012.


"Inside Japan's Nuclear Meltdown" (Frontline/PBS)

"Japan Feared 'Demonic Chain Reaction' at Reactor, Report Says" (Los Angeles Times)

"Japan Weighed Evacuating Tokyo in Nuclear Crisis" (New York Times)

"Japan's Damaged Fukushima Nuclear Plant One Year On" (BBC News)

Source: PRI/The World, 02/29/2012