The Fukushima Accident from the Eyes of the Operating Staff

in Press Releases

LIGHTNING RELEASES 03/19/14 — Fukushima: The First Five Days is an E-book describing the nuclear accident at Fukushima Daiichi from the perspective of the people who were actually there – the operators and emergency management team. The narrative is taken from the hand-written records kept by the Fukushima staff from March 11-15, 2011. The account not only reveals the staff’s personal actions, but also documents critical conversations between operating staff, plant management, the utility’s home office in Tokyo, and Japan’s Prime Minister.

What actually happened? What did it feel like to be inside the control rooms and emergency center at Fukushima after all electric power was lost, with no hope of recovery? Why was the accident possible? Could it have been avoided? Who may have been responsible? How accurate were the Press reports broadcast around the world? Fukushima: The First Five Days delivers answers to all of these questions…and more. It also provides understandable explanations of operator terminology and relevant emergency systems mentioned in the records, literally translating the technical into everyday language and using simple graphics whenever possible. The book neither advocates nor opposes the nuclear energy option. It lets the heroic efforts of Fukushima’s operating staff speak for itself.

For five days beginning March 11, 2011, the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station in Japan experienced the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl in 1986. A combination of government complacency, industrial arrogance, and an economic conflict of interest were unquestionably culpable. International recommendations for greatly improved tsunami protections, beginning in the 1990s, were repeatedly rejected by the Japanese government and Tokyo Electric Power Company as too expensive and based on events too unlikely to be considered. They were very, very wrong.

The main body of the book follows the sequence of actions performed by the operators at Fukushima Daiichi. Their hand-written records strongly indicate that despite inadequate tsunami protection and a complete electrical blackout, all hydrogen explosions could have been averted and damage to the three reactor cores mitigated. The critical event was the meltdown and hydrogen explosion of unit #1, which literally doomed the reactor fuel cells of units 2 and 3, and made the hydrogen explosions of units 3 and 4 inevitable. The unit #1 meltdown and hydrogen explosion could have been avoided if it were not for poor emergency power preparations, a lack of sufficient emergency procedures, and significant interference from Japan’s Prime Minister which caused lengthy unnecessary delays.

The narrative concludes with a breakdown of the four most-prominent international news sories about the accident during the first week of the crisis. All were fraught with rumor and innuendo which rendered them materially incorrect. Fukushima: The First Five Days addresses each flawed news story in detail, explaining how they contradicted both operator records and a genuine understanding of the technology.

Fukushima: The First Five Days was written by Leslie E. Corrice, a former nuclear operations professional who specialized in Health Physics for 21 years. He has become a highly successful nuclear blogger whose widely-acclaimed “Fukushima Accident Updates” are posted twice weekly. The book has received excellent reviews, including:

“This is a story which cannot be put down.” (Will Davis; Atomic Power Review), and…

“Extremely well done and helpful” (Meredith A.), “Thanks for devoting the time to produce this work. It’s a very useful account.” (Barry S.), “While it is factual, it still scared the [crap] out of me…”  (James W.)

Fukushima: The First Five Days was first released to a limited audience in 2012, but is now available to everyone at all on-line E-book stores, including Amazon/Kindle and Barnes & Noble/Nook.

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