Narratives of a Japan's nuclear industry worker heard in Africa
During my visit in Africa, I happened to meet a Japanese man. In a
restaurant, we ate together.
Listen to what he narrated to me.
"I used to work to construct nuclear power plants in Japan. My job was
to make blueprints of the central reactors. But in the 70's when I
designed, we considered only horizontal seismological movements and
totally neglected vertical movements."
I asked, "So, if an earthquake occurs just beneath a reactor?"
"It collapses. "
I was almost stunned for his word, but he continued,
"I had a chance to read a secret file. It was about an accident that
took place during transport of an important part of a nuclear reactor: a
steel containment weighing hundreds of tons. It slipped off the vessel
into the sea. They managed to draw it ashore, and found that it got
distorted because of the shock from the fall. They thought that they had
no time to lose to make another containment. So they put huge hydraulic
lifters to make the distorted containment to be seemingly round and
"Such a remedy damages the rigidity of a steel containment!" I shouted.
"Yes, it is evident taht it lost its original strength."
"What was the aftermath of this ?" I asked.
"They made this all secret, and officers of the Ministry of Commerce
decided to exclude the enterprise from competitive tendering of nuclear
industry for some time. The containment is now being used in a nuclear
power plant in Fukushima Prefecture."
"What brought you to Africa?"
"Well, one day, I entered a containment of a reactor, there was no
radioactivity because it was still under construction. I got lost in it.
Desperately looking for a way to get out of it, I got into a state of some
'NO WAY OUT, N O W A Y O U T, N O W A Y !!' I shouted in the
Thus, I came to Africa to free myself from the trauma of nuclear
industries, and to find a way to get out..."
Prof. ANKEI Yuji
Yamaguchi P. Universtity.
753-8502 Yamaguchi, Japan