JAPAN | Nuclear plants urged to brace for biggest tsunami

Posted on July 26, 2011

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JAPAN | NHK | 26 July 2011

A senior member of a Japanese government council on disaster preparedness says nuclear plants must prepare for the biggest possible tsunami, no matter how small the likelihood of such an event.

Kansai University Professor Yoshiaki Kawata, who heads the council’s survey team, briefed the Nuclear Safety Commission on the council’s new tsunami measures on Tuesday.

Kawata said a nuclear plant that Chugoku Electric Power Company plans to build by the Seto Inland Sea could be at risk. He cited new findings that a past massive earthquake in the Pacific off central to southwestern Japan sent tsunami waves into the sea.

Kawata also cited old documents that say a tsunami hit Wakasa Bay in Fukui Prefecture after an earthquake about 400 years ago. Thirteen nuclear reactors are located by the bay in the Sea of Japan.

Kawata said even an inland quake could send earth and sand crashing into the sea, triggering a tsunami.

He said the impact of an accident caused by failure to prepare for the biggest possible tsunami would be enormous.

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Posted in: JAPAN