The Kashiwazaki Kariwa plant was hit by an earthquake in 2007, but lessons were not learnt (photo: dpa)

Japan ignored nuclear warnings and believed in the myth of absolute safety

Japan’s ‘nuclear village’ received repeated warnings and advice about the country’s plants, but would not accept that they were unsafe. American regulators even pinpointed power system improvements that might have saved more of the Fukushima reactors. When the disaster occurred, the government and plant operator were unprepared and the safety myth was exposed, explains Professor Dr Stefan Lippert in the fourth part of our five-part series on Fukushima.

WITHIN a few hours of the earthquake and tsunami hitting north-east Japan on March 11, 2011, the government realised that the critical issue was the threat of a meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

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Dr. Stefan Lippert
Everyone involved in crisis response was completely taken by surprise. They grew up in a world in which what had happened was not supposed to happen
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