Monday, March 21, 2011

Fukushima: workers moved out after problems in reactor 3

At 15:55 local time (6:55 GMT) smoke was spotted coming out from reactor no. 3 and personnel was evacuated, reports Gara newspaper[es], citing NHK (pictured left). 

At least two more days would be needed for the cooling system of reactor no. 2 to get back to work, in spite of the successful reconnection to the electric grid yesterday, as reported by the  Nuclear Security Agency of Japan. This reconnection will also allow to restore ventilation, light and measuring devices in the only of the four reactors that keeps its outside cover intact, improving somewhat the working conditions of the liquidators (in suicide mission).

Update: the smoke from unit 3 has already stopped but now it is reactor 2 which is smoking...

Affected citizens abandoned

While the management of the catastrophe as such may well be criticized, the management of the humanitarian problem caused by the conjunction of the tsunami and nuclear catastrophe is just awful. 

The authorities seem unable to organize aid for the many victims of both combined catastrophes. Food and other basic resources are just not reaching  the victims, largely because of fear but also, it seems to me, because inability of the authorities to organize the rescue and evacuation effort. 

People in the affected areas feel totally abandoned. We are not talking of a poor country with little infrastructure: we are talking of the third power on Earth in terms of economic might. One would expect Japan to be able and effectively provide quality help for the people affected. Even if private transporters do not want to take risks, they could always use the military. 

But the impression is that they do not care about the victims: that it is everybody by themselves.

Also (update): German nuclear expert: Fukushima is 20-30 worse than Chernobyl.

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