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More Bad News From Fukushima

samzenpus posted 1 year,20 days | from the from-bad-to-worse dept.

Japan 268

PuceBaboon writes "Both Reuters and the BBC are carrying the story of an increase in radiation levels reported by Tepco for contaminated water leaking from storage tanks on site. When this leak was discovered almost two weeks ago, Tepco reported that the radiation level was 100-millisieverts. It now transpires that 100-millisieverts was the highest reading that the measuring equipment in use was capable of displaying. The latest readings (with upgraded equipment) are registering 1800-millisieverts which, according to both news sources, could prove fatal to anyone exposed to it for four hours. Coincidentally (and somewhat ironically), today is earthquake disaster prevention day in Japan, with safety drills taking place nationwide."

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Where were the professionals. (5, Insightful)

PlusFiveTroll (754249) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730333)

-Tepco reported that the radiation level was 100-millisieverts. It now transpires that 100-millisieverts was the highest reading that the measuring equipment in use was capable of displaying.

What the actual fuck. How could such a stupid mistake be made?

Re:Where were the professionals. (5, Insightful)

tuo42 (3004801) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730357)

That's what I was thinkng also!

Then again, it is a very interesting way of damage control. Simply bring equipment which can only measure up to the damage level we want.

I cannot understand how a company can make such a mistake. This is the most severe radioactive problem at the moment, threatening to change a country for the next decades.

They know how important this is, and fail to bring along the right equipment?

Unbelievable...

Re:Where were the professionals. (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730421)

It is all intentional and just a big game of what they can cover up and with which lies they can get away with.
The whole Fukushima operation is just a big scam with Tepco and the government as key players.
The current LDP government is financially supported by all major Japanese companies that are heavily involved in the nuclear industry.
That was a very lucrative business because there were hardly any rules that could not be bend but that has all gone bad after the Fukushima disaster.
The main objective for Tepco and the LDP prime minister is to get nuclear energy accepted again.
Although there are many accidents and false reports, the national media does not pay much attention, fearing the wrath of the LDP patry and some of the major companies here in Japan. But that doesn't differ much from the US I guess.
Also, the national television company is just another propaganda media outlet but may Japanese are not aware of this fact.

Japan has a long history of cover-ups when the government and major Japanese companies are involved.

Re:Where were the professionals. (5, Insightful)

polar red (215081) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730543)

Humanity has a long history of cover-ups when big organisations are involved.

FTFY

Re:Where were the professionals. (2)

Redmancometh (2676319) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730697)

Maybe it was an incompetent news agency reporting on a preliminary result. 100 millisieverts is a pretty high level on its own after all.

Re:Where were the professionals. (2)

DarkOx (621550) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730835)

If your equipments scale goes to 100 and the reading you get is 100; than its pretty incompetent to report that value as anything other than 'its at least 100'

Re:Where were the professionals. (4, Insightful)

fnj (64210) | 1 year,20 days | (#44731089)

If your equipment only registers to 100 and you read 100 on it, then it is WHOLLY imcompetent not to RUN and get better equipment to re-measure.

Re:Where were the professionals. (0)

fnj (64210) | 1 year,20 days | (#44731061)

Douchebags have a long history of cover-ups.

FTFY

Re:Where were the professionals. (5, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730519)

Tepco needs to be taken out of the equation. Now.

(Though they can still pay the cleanup bill...)

Re:Where were the professionals. (2)

frootcakeuk (638517) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730623)

It is! Unbelievable! As in I actually don't believe them!

Re:Where were the professionals. (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730643)

It isn't damage control. It is technician stupidity. There are a wide range of radiation meters. But the type that can read up to 200 Rem/hr (2,000 mSv) aren't common. A typical meter won't even read up to 1 Rem/hr, because such high levels aren't common. Only casualty meters read higher.

Any decent health physicist is acutely aware of where the meter saturates (which can sometimes be caused by the electronics itself--you really need to understand how your meter works when you adjust the scales).

Simply bring equipment which can only measure up to the damage level we want.

No, you bring the meter with the radiation you expect to find. If it is higher, you back out and bring a meter for that. If your readings are 50 mRem/hr at most points, it is ridiculous to carry around a meter than reads 0-200 Rem/hr. It is not precise. It is like reading the speed on your speedometer when it is calibrated in units of 500 mph.

Re:Where were the professionals. (0)

Redmancometh (2676319) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730711)

This. Was most likely lack of understanding on the reporters part.

Re:Where were the professionals. (4, Insightful)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730743)

It isn't damage control. It is technician stupidity.

Apologists need to stop trotting out equivalents to, "Don't attribute to malice.. bla bla stupidity," at every corner.

It's not the middle of the 20th century. We're awash with excellent physicists who can't find a job, and I can assure you that everyone in the highly competitive Japan who has a job in the nuclear industry has the technical ability.

What they don't have is a moral compass: it's a very obeisant culture.

Re:Where were the professionals. (4, Insightful)

GNious (953874) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730913)

It isn't damage control. It is technician stupidity.

Apologists need to stop trotting out equivalents to, "Don't attribute to malice.. bla bla stupidity," at every corner.

People just need to understand that there is a point where Stupidity stops being a valid and reasonable excuse. Still having Tepco handling all of this is one such case, where it is not longer correct to attribute it to Stupidity.

Re: Where were the professionals. (4, Insightful)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730871)

But it should be obvious to anyone that if your equipment pegs to 100mSv and no higher that something is wrong, and you shouldn't go to the media claiming 100mSv was the likely extent of the radiation levels in the leak.

Re:Where were the professionals. (2)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730881)

I get that, but if your speedometer is pegged to the maximum reading at 150mph, the thought might occur to you that you are going faster.

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730969)

If your readings are 50 mRem/hr at most points, it is ridiculous to carry around a meter than reads 0-200 Rem/hr. It is not precise. It is like reading the speed on your speedometer when it is calibrated in units of 500 mph.

In the really real world, we practically never see a nice round number like that. We're always seeing fractions. So if the number was that round, then I'd check it again just to see if the meter was doing something weird. And if I got precisely the same completely round number over and over again, then I'd certainly suspect the results.

Stupidity is too meek a word for this situation.

Re:Where were the professionals. (1, Interesting)

fnj (64210) | 1 year,20 days | (#44731193)

Excuse me if I say that sounds like bullshit to me. I have a surplus civil defense radiation survey meter. Cost me about five bucks. The meter is marked 0, 0.1, 0.2, 0.3, 0.4, 0.5 r/hr with 5 minor ticks between each of those majors. It has a CLEVER DEVICE CALLED A RANGE SWITCH that selects x1, x10, or x100. The reading does not bounce around hopelessly on the lowest scale. It looks like it's fine to single minor ticks. So it can measure 0.1 r/hr with reasonable precision, and it can measure 50 r/hr. A SINGLE device. Don't tell me this exact device wouldn't be possible to read both 10 mSv/h and 2000 mSv/h. One using the same GENERAL PRINCIPLE could.

It's the same general principle as a DVM that has 0.2, 2, 20, and 200 volt scales. The 0.2 volt scale takes quite precise, repeatable, and accurate measurements, yet it can still read to 1000 times that high.

Hint: NOBODY with any smarts at all cares whether a reading is, say, 50 +/- 0.01. Whats matters is whether it is, generally speaking, 15, 50, or 150 for example. If you go into a disaster zone and take 100 readings in the same general area, they are all going to diverge by that much anyway. Put it another way. Someone who absorbs 601 rads is not going to definitely die within the next week, and a guy next to him who takes 599 rads is not going to be washed off and sent home because he got 0.16% less than the LD50.

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

dj245 (732906) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730979)

That's what I was thinkng also! Then again, it is a very interesting way of damage control. Simply bring equipment which can only measure up to the damage level we want. I cannot understand how a company can make such a mistake. This is the most severe radioactive problem at the moment, threatening to change a country for the next decades. They know how important this is, and fail to bring along the right equipment? Unbelievable...

In the measuring instrument business, you generally size the instrument to have a scale which is 50-80% of its range. So, for example, a speedometer for a Honda Civic might go to 140mph even though the vehicle is capable of only 115mph. It is bad to only use a very small % of the range of a measuring device for many reasons. If you have a speedometer in your Honda that goes to 5,000MPH, the accuracy at normal speeds is likely to suffer. If these were instruments for measuring leakage out of a storage tank, then 100 millisieverts seems entirely appropriate to me. If they used an instrument with a larger range, the sensitivity at low levels would be lacking.

Using an instrument with a small range is not the problem here. Perhaps they should have had a second instrument with a larger range in the same location. Maybe there was a procedure which stated that "if the instrument maxes out, assume the dosage is very high and don't go anywhere near it". Since there is no story about how Worker X was exposed and has 10 days to live, it could very well be that such a procedure was in place.

Re: Where were the professionals. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730369)

They were using the deluxe meter but forgot to bring the pro meter that day.

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

durrr (1316311) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730381)

I wonder how the values are measured. Is the values measured at some fixed distance to the source to do they have some waterproofed sensor they immerse?

Re:Where were the professionals. (4, Insightful)

gweihir (88907) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730563)

You cannot measure radiation underwater. Usual measurement is 1m free-air-distance, but at the level they observe, they cannot sent anyone in there to make these measurements.

Re:Where were the professionals. (2)

zm (257549) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730669)

Usual measurement is 1m free-air-distance, but at the level they observe, they cannot sent anyone in there to make these measurements.

According to TFA, they can, with basic protection:

Tepco said the radiation measured was beta rays, which would be easier to protect against than gamma rays.

Re:Where were the professionals. (4, Interesting)

gweihir (88907) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730813)

That is a lie. Well, the part about Beta is true, so yes, they can. But there is no feasible protection against Gamma rays for people. The only thing that is there (lead aprons) reduce it at best down to 50%, but they are so heavy that you move at half the speed or slower, so no protection at all. At Cernobyl, the experts decided that running was by far the best protection available, and have a look at how few of them are still alive.

Re:Where were the professionals. (2)

ColdWetDog (752185) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730681)

Not to worry. The water all leaked out.

Re:Where were the professionals. (3)

GNious (953874) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730925)

[...] but at the level they observe, they cannot sent anyone in there to make these measurements.

Oh, I'm sure they can locate some individuals in the upper management, who could/should be sent in.....

Re:Where were the professionals. (4, Insightful)

jamesh (87723) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730395)

-Tepco reported that the radiation level was 100-millisieverts. It now transpires that 100-millisieverts was the highest reading that the measuring equipment in use was capable of displaying.

What the actual fuck. How could such a stupid mistake be made?

Wouldn't be the first time testing was stopped as soon as a nice answer was found...

Re:Where were the professionals. (2)

lxs (131946) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730475)

Just be glad that it was an actual radiation detector and not a rebranded golf ball finder [slashdot.org] .

This error was done more than once (2)

burni2 (1643061) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730397)

This error, reporting such a dead end scale value, was also reported sometime ago by Tepco, and there was another time before that, sorry I cannot get the links out so quickly but I clearly remember this. This same mistake has occured more than once within the hole Fukushima disaster,

The scheme is also the same: First, horray everything is safe. Later, Ups the needle hit the scale end and we did not tell them to start running.

How could .. ?
Well, on the one hand untrained personel or simply intentional or both.

Re:This error was done more than once (4, Interesting)

fritsd (924429) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730853)

Here's a scary thought: maybe most of their trained personnel has already received the maximum lifetime dose and has been given their retirement already..

Re:Where were the professionals. (5, Funny)

Sqr(twg) (2126054) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730407)

Just wait a few weeks until they find out that 1800 mSv is the maximum reading on the new instrument.

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

burni2 (1643061) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730419)

hopefully they got the units right
Sv - microsievert
mSv - millisievert

difference
1000x or life of death

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

burni2 (1643061) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730429)

"mu" was not displayed .. ups

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

fnj (64210) | 1 year,20 days | (#44731237)

Understood. Many have been caught in that trap. Using slashdot, it's as if UNICODE was never developed, eh.

Re:Where were the professionals. (3, Interesting)

Urkki (668283) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730425)

What the actual fuck. How could such a stupid mistake be made?

Well, situation was probably carefully evaluated, and everything considered, it was decided that this is a mistake worth making. Just speculating to provide an example, there may have been something else happening at the same time, some evaluation or hearing or whatever, and there it was important that the reading was not too high, so the short term mistake at the expense of looking like amateurs was deemed a good trade.

Re:Where were the professionals. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730509)

The same way lead-coverings over radiation tags for workers: "By design".

(oh and by the way, 1800 mSv means 1.8 Sv... Yanks and the metric system, that seems to be as bad a combo as japanese and atomic power...)

Re:Where were the professionals. (4, Insightful)

AHuxley (892839) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730533)

It allows "smart" people note that the rates are like a medical xray or passenger flight and get modded up as the math is sort of correct.

Re: Where were the professionals. (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730897)

(oh and by the way, 1800 mSv means 1.8 Sv... Yanks and the metric system, that seems to be as bad a combo as japanese and atomic power...) yes and 500 ml is 5 deciliters but you don't hear anyone say that because it isn't very useful. Not reducing everything down to the closest unit can actually be quite helpful for comparisons. The fact that you don't understand this says more about your own ignorance than it does the "yanks" you seem to enjoy impugning.

Re: Where were the professionals. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44731265)

Twit.

Re:Where were the professionals. (0)

gweihir (88907) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730559)

It is not a "mistake". It is a combination of denial and politics. The water is a minor issue though, the issue is the pool with the spent fuel rods. If they do not empty that very soon and very carefully, they will get a catastrophe which will kill their nation. All it takes is a minor earthquake (frequent in that region) and the wind blowing in the right direction.

Re:Where were the professionals. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730851)

Having had some personal experience with instruments like this, it's more probable that the instruments have been calibrated with a given confidence interval for a given range of measurements. Measurements outside this range are associated with a different confidence interval and so on.

Don't attribute to malice, those things that can be adequately explained by incompetence.

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

gweihir (88907) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730937)

I understand what you are saying, but it does not make sense. If your instrument scales to, say 500mS/h, but is calibrated at 100mS/h, you still see 500mS/h with a needle display and "over" with a digital one, you just loose accuracy at that measurement. Which you do anyways, since it is out of range. No the only possible explanation is that the maximum display range was actually 100mS/h, and they deliberately lied about the measurement, because a measurement that is hard at the upper end of the range can never, ever be interpreted as "range end", but must always be "out of measurable range". Nobody can be that incompetent and survive in a radiation zone.

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

trum4n (982031) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730653)

"Officer, i couldnt have been going 120mph. My speedo only goes to 85!"

Its an excuse. Duh. Upgrading teh equipment would make them look even worse.

Re: Where were the professionals. (3, Funny)

antifoidulus (807088) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730921)

My speedo only goes to 85!
. That sounds like a personal issue, not a mechanical one...

Re:Where were the professionals. (2)

c0lo (1497653) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730679)

-Tepco reported that the radiation level was 100-millisieverts. It now transpires that 100-millisieverts was the highest reading that the measuring equipment in use was capable of displaying.

What the actual fuck. How could such a stupid mistake be made?

Yes, the test should have been repeated using measuring device with 10-millisieverts max scale: everything would be normal then, no reason to worry.

(ducks)

This was NOT mistake. (5, Interesting)

boorack (1345877) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730733)

It was deliberate, somewhat shortsighted lie. This is how every fuckin big fat corporation behaves these days. It is worse than communism. Just compare Fukushima fiasco to old commies handling Chernobyl. They did everything they could to NOT let this crap hit watertable. They've put liquid nitrogen injecting installation under the reactor to make sure it won't burn through the basement and won't contaminate ground waters. They've put 600 thousands people to work to clean up their mess (every man for one minute or so). Compare this to the crap, lies, corruption and cost cuttings TEPCO is doing on their site. Our corporate fascist system is failing us badly and if we won't put them all in check soon, consequences of their misdeeds, greed and corruption will hit us hard.

Re:This was NOT mistake. (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44731125)

Hey calm down! Everybody can make mistakes!
For instance, it took time for US army to realize there were no weapon of mass destruction in Iraq. They searched a lot though, especially close to oil wells.
(Now mod me troll, offtopic, flamebait I don't care posting as AC fucking Americans)

Re:Where were the professionals. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730755)

What the actual fuck. How could such a stupid mistake be made?

Engineer: "The reading is at least 100mSv, as that's the limit of the instrument I have available. A more accurate reading will be available when the new equipment arrives"

Managers, then PR department, then press release, then conference with head honchos, then translation, then re-reporting

Media "The reading is 100msv" [smbc-comics.com]

Re:Where were the professionals. (3)

Applehu Akbar (2968043) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730899)

Japan needs to ask for the help of international experts. There is a ton of unutilized nuclear expertise just in the US who could be a part of this effort.

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

JakeBurn (2731457) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730901)

I wonder if I could use that excuse in court by installing a speedometer that only went to 70mph?

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730991)

How could such a stupid mistake be made?

"Bring the meter that only goes up to 100 milliserverts."

Never attribute to incompetence that which can adequately be explained by self-reinforcing emotional behavior.

Re:Where were the professionals. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44731071)

> How could such a stupid mistake be made?

You must be new.

We've been doing such stupid mistakes for, let me see, some 7 million years -- and you should see the people who thought tigers were big fluffy tigers in the beginning... some people think reactors are way cool in that same venue.

Re:Where were the professionals. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44731101)

> ...tigers were big fluffy tigers...

tigers were big fluffy cats... I'm sleepy and human, therefore... more stupid mistakes...

Re:Where were the professionals. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44731143)

They were too busy raking in the profits. Now its the people who have to pay with their lives, land and taxes.
IOW business as usual.

Captcha: dodged

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44731205)

You must be new to damage control.

Re:Where were the professionals. (1)

citizenr (871508) | 1 year,20 days | (#44731217)

It wouldnt be honorable to admit equipment is not suitable for the job = LIE IN YOUR FACE like a true Asian.

Oblig. (4, Informative)

bondsbw (888959) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730353)

1800 mSv is 36 times the maximum yearly dose permitted to US radiation workers. More here [xkcd.com] .

Re:Oblig. (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730391)

Per hour.

Re:Oblig. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730501)

On the Reuters site it said it was enough to kill a person in 4 hours...
I believe the scale is logarithmic

Re:Oblig. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730707)

This is bullshit, for two reasons. 2 Sv is enough to kill a person, but with a low probability. 8 Sv is enough to kill a person with a higher probability. But it all depends on how the body is placed and if the radiation is a field, a point, or a puddle. These radiations measurements are "on contact" measurements, which means that the meter is placed as close to the emitter as possible (about half a centimeter). A person working in the area would not put their body in the same position. So no, even though the "on contact" reading could possibly kill a person in one hour (with a low probability), the likeliness of a person being in that position is unlikely. The same applies to being there for 4 hours. So, what is the general area radiation? That is the primary thing you need to worry about for safety. And that will depend on the size of the spill and its contents. And 1,800 mSv "on contact" reading might not translate to an enormous general area field. If it was just a fuel fragment that was directly measured, the dose would fall of at an inverse distance squared. If it was due to the pool itself, then the rate would fall off less, depending on the geometry and size of the pool.

Re:Oblig. (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730847)

From the F'ing BBC Article: "It now says readings taken near the leaking tank on Saturday showed radiation was high enough to prove lethal within four hours of exposure."

"near" - given previous shenanigans I'd be inclined to not underestimate the severity.

Re:Oblig. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730971)

XKCD claims the "Extra dose in Tokyo in weeks following Fukushima accident" was 40 mSv. This is an error. It should be 40 uSv. At least this error is in the right direction.

Re:Oblig. (3, Interesting)

BigDukeSix (832501) | 1 year,20 days | (#44731045)

These are really big doses we are talking about, in the range of what external-beam radiotherapy uses to destroy tumors. When stating that four hours' dosage at this level is likely to be lethal, this means "likely to be lethal by acute radiation sickness with death occurring in days." In reality, much shorter exposures are likely to be lethal from induced cancers (leukemia and thyroid cancers being common). It will just take longer for those people to die. I suspect that most of the workers who have been on site to this point have likely had their fates sealed.

Forget Asad (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730355)

This is the next mass murder in the works, the industrialized countries should form a crack team to help the Japanese who are clearly in total denial.

Forget Asad (0)

DrBytes (695593) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730375)

This is the next mass murder, the industrialized countries should put together a crack team to contain and salvage this horror, the Japanese are clearly in denial.

Waiting on all the Armchair experts of slashdot... (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730449)

to keep telling us how this is nothing to worry about, as they have been since day 1 of this disaster. How many bananas do the salmon need to eat now?

Wrong issue (2, Insightful)

gweihir (88907) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730473)

While everybody is writing about the water, the real issue is the spent-fuel-rod pool. If that thing is not secured very soon, Tokyo becoming uninhabitable within a very short time is a real possibility. There is so much radiation in there, it is staggering. The pool is inadequately cooled. The pool is damaged enough that even a minor earthquake could prevent cooling it more and a fire starting in there would both be impossible to put out and starting by itself very fast. If that happens, only the wind not blowing in the wrong direction could save most of Japans industrial base and a significant part of its population. With the probability of minor earthquakes in that area, they are already on borrowed time.

Personal prediction: TEPCO will go on blundering about, and eventually they will get a nuclear catastrophe that makes all others so far look like a summer breeze. After that, Japan will not play a role in the world for a few thousand years or longer, because for all intents and purposes it will not really be there anymore.

Re:Wrong issue (4, Funny)

durrr (1316311) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730517)

Sounds like you sourced that from HystericGreenAlarmism.com

Re:Wrong issue (2, Insightful)

gweihir (88907) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730613)

That is probably what the Japanese are thinking also. It is called denial, and it can kill on a large scale if practiced in the face of a severe risk.

Re:Wrong issue (1)

greg_barton (5551) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730639)

The end of the world is neigh? Which seal of the apocalypse is Fukushima?

Re:Wrong issue (1)

Mashdar (876825) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730665)

Andre the seal.

Re:Wrong issue (2, Funny)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730757)

The end of the world is neigh?

OMG PONIES.

Re:Wrong issue (0, Troll)

gweihir (88907) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730841)

Now you are spouting BS. Pathetic. I think the problem for US citizens is that TMI did not have that hydrogen explosion back then (it was a very, very close thing), so you people have not though about running from a continent-wide fallout cloud. I was in Europe when Chernobyl blew up, and quite a few people grabbed their kids and did run, also because no reliable measurements were published and it was clear the authorities were either clueless or lying. Turns out both was true.

Re:Wrong issue (1)

greg_barton (5551) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730889)

You're the one making the claims. Back them up, please.

Re:Wrong issue (2)

Splab (574204) | 1 year,20 days | (#44731079)

Speaking of bullshit, it's very hard to take you serious when you spew it yourself about Chernobyl. People did not go into panic mode and there was lots of measurements published, in fact the reason why the USSR admitted the accident was because Sweden (first) and then Denmark started picking up unusual high radiation readings. Granted, if you lived in the eastern block, you would probably have been spoon fed bullshit, but the scale of the catastrophe was quite clear to the western world.

Re:Wrong issue (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730821)

Sounds like your comment came from HeadUpMyAssCorporateLovingDenier.com.

Oh, you don't like my snark. Fine. Then STFU and stick to the facts and leave the tantrum-throwing to toddlers.

Re:Wrong issue (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730861)

It's only funny until it actually happens (the nuclear wasteland thing, not the sourcing thing).

Re:Wrong issue (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730529)

You must be fun at parties.

There are constantly earthquakes in the area (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730545)

I am there several times a year, the ground is still unstable.

Re:Wrong issue (1)

ed_anger (2982749) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730607)

if it results in creating Godzilla, it's all worth it.

Wrong PLACE not "Wrong Issue" (1)

Shavano (2541114) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730793)

How did this comment get modded UP? Tokyo is 300km from the affected reactors for God's sake. Tokyo isn't going to become uninhabitable EVER due to fuel rods at Soma unless they physically ship the rods to Tokyo.

Re:Wrong PLACE not "Wrong Issue" (1, Informative)

gweihir (88907) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730863)

You have no clue. Really, none whatsoever. 300km only mean that they can see it coming, not that they can do anything about it. Shipping the rods to Tokyo would be pretty safe though, as they would still be contained. As long as you keep them cooled, you could even walk next to them. If they burn, however, all that radioactive material ends up in very fine particles for maximum effect.

Re:Wrong PLACE not "Wrong Issue" (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730941)

Your ignorance hurts. The only thing protecting the fuel rods is water. The water is in a elevated position. So if the pool leaks the rods run hot and you've got an open air reactor spectaculaire! In this case the whole northern hemisphere will be affected.

Re:Wrong PLACE not "Wrong Issue" (1, Insightful)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730945)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Chernobyl_radiation_map_1996.svg [wikipedia.org]

The Chernobyl exclusion area is about 700km from tip to tip. Varying from about 300km wide to 100km wide.

Total "lost" area is 2,600 km.

If a similar area were lost in Japan it would be .6% of their total land mass, concentrated in important areas (potentially including tokyo as noted above).

I agree, it's unlikely. But it's not impossible.

Re:Wrong PLACE not "Wrong Issue" (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44731083)

The Chernobyl exclusion area contains all area where annual increase in radiation exposure is more than 1mSv/yr.

With all due respect, that is a stupid level.

Secondly, comparing Fukushima to Chernobyl is stupid in all practical ways. Saying they are the because of some scale is like saying apple is orange because they are fruits.

Finally, if TEPCO allows for actively cooled storage areas to overheat like the original paranoid poaster was talking about, then they *deserve* what they get. For car analogy, it would be like driving at 300mph and looking only in rear view mirror to determine how they are driving.

PS. No matter what happens at Fukushima, it is not possible for Japan to become uninhabitable.

Re:Wrong issue (3, Informative)

nojayuk (567177) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730879)

I presume you are referring to the spent fuel pool in the reactor 4 building as that's the one that's been reported by fantasists and alarmists like Arne Gunderson as exploding, imminently collapsing, bulging, disintegrating, sinking into the ground and catching fire ever since the accidents happened. Unfortunately for their delusions reactor 4 is still there as is its spent fuel pool which today has a water temperature of 38 deg C., not what I'd describe as "inadequately cooled".

Right now the engineers at Fukushima Daiichi are finishing building a crane and supporting structure on reactor 4 in preparation to start removing the spent fuel rods from the pool. They've been working on this project for more than a year, clearing away the rubble on top of the building and constructing a heavy foundation before erecting the crane structure alongside and on top of the building and enclosing the top of the building in a weather shield since, in the words of George RR Martin, "winter is coming".

The crane system has to be heavily built since it will be craning fuel canisters weighing over a hundred tonnes out of the pool after spent fuel bundles are loaded into them. It's not something that can be done safely in an ad-hoc manner despite the Chicken Littles running around in a panic screaming "the world is ending!". Once the crane's up and running in the next few weeks it should only take a month or two to empty the pool of fuel bundles at which time I'm sure the folks worrying about it will turn their attention to the other reactor spent fuel pools which are also in train to be emptied too.

Re:Wrong issue (1)

AHuxley (892839) | 1 year,20 days | (#44731075)

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-03-18/japan-unit-4-pool-s-heat-exceeded-three-times-normal-iaea-says.html [bloomberg.com]
http://news.yahoo.com/fukushima-plant-steps-closer-fuel-rod-removal-010447411.html [yahoo.com]
Empty the pool of fuel bundles .... 1,533 fuel rods ~1,300 used fuel rod assemblies? ~ 400 tons ~18 meters above the ground :)

Argh. That's not a radiation level. (5, Informative)

Beryllium Sphere(tm) (193358) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730557)

1800 millisieverts is a dose, not a level. It's as basic a mistake as confusing feet with feet per second.

From other sources, it's a logical guess that what's meant is millisieverts per hour but an article should not make the reader guess what it means.

Re:Argh. That's not a radiation level. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730661)

Of course "feet" is not a unit. Everybody in the world except a couple of countries knows that.

Re: Argh. That's not a radiation level. (2)

mrbester (200927) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730775)

Neither are barleycorns but that doesn't stop shoes from being sized using them.

Re:Argh. That's not a radiation level. (2)

alexhs (877055) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730789)

Of course "feet" is not a unit. Everybody in the world except a couple of countries knows that.

Well, I agree that feet usually come in pairs rather than units. Still, that's not a reason to mock disabled countries.

Re:Argh. That's not a radiation level. (1)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730859)

Of course it's a unit. In fact a lot of so-called metric countries sell goods by the foot. So it's way more than a 'couple' of countries.

The idea that once you go metric ALL of the goods in that country are automatically converted to metric measures is bullshit. For a concrete example in the UK lumber is priced by the cubic foot.

Re:Argh. That's not a radiation level. (1)

MyLongNickName (822545) | 1 year,20 days | (#44731053)

The article does NOT make you guess. The idiot who posted the summary chopped that part out, and the dutiful editor let it go without correcting it.

No, no, no! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730635)

Slashdot peoplre. It just dupe. Nothing see here. Move along plrease.

- CEO of City Power

If idiots RTFA at TEPCO.. (oh well.. this is /.) (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730769)

If you just googled for 1 min. you'll find this link:
http://www.tepco.co.jp/en/announcements/2013/1230191_5502.html

And if you still don't get it, then continues reading gossip magazine..

Slow day at /.

Units in TEPCO bulletin are scary FUBAR (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44731163)

Sieverts are a unit of equivalent dosage, not a rate of dosage. Being told "high radiation (maximum 1,800 mSv) found" tells me absolutely nothing about the radiation environment. Is it 1,800 mSv per hour, second, year? Stand under the sky for long enough and you can accumulate 1,800 mSv through cosmic rays - but it might take years.

Also, the TEPCO bulletin states that the 1,800 mSv is misleading as the radiation is primarily beta radiation. This is nonsense as Sieverts are an equivalent dose that is weighted on the radiation type (i.e. the alpha/beta radiation should already be factored into the determination of Sieverts). The number that the 1,800 may be counting may be mGy (Grays).

The bulletin shows a very poor understanding of the units of radiation exposure - I don't know how much of that is the public relations office effing up technical information, or (more frightening) an indicator of the capability of TEPCO to understand and deal with the crisis.

I always do that. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44730773)

I always mess up some mundane detail.

What the.... (0)

rayhigh (912376) | 1 year,20 days | (#44730947)

What the Fuk.

..Difference between TEPCO and Spinal Tap? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#44731007)

..TAPs amps went to 11, otherwise, apparently not much else, sadly.

reporting 100-millisieverts p/h when they were in fact 1800-millisieverts is somewhere beyond `mistake`, it is in fact probable employee manslaughter.

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