Posts Tagged ‘nuclear reactor’

Crisis Continued

Earthquake


The Zombie Apocalypse would be more fun. At least that’s what computer games tell me!

So, we’re preparing for more earthquake craziness by getting together some canned food, bottled water, and putting it all into a bag with some clothes in case we have to dash out of the house in a hurry. That’s what we were doing over the weekend, but now we’re less worried about another earthquake and more worried about impending nuclear disaster.

It’s been a crazy up-and-down state of near panic for us. Information is difficult to come by and what we find out often seems to conflict other sources. For instance, when we first found of about the nuclear power plant it was through the Japanese media, and it SEEMED as if we didn’t have to worry about a meltdown for the time being, and only the poor people still within the 30 km evac radius had to be scared.

However even the English media sources don’t seem to be discussing the worst case scenario. Now what I mean by that is not “how the reactor will melt down”, but what this will mean for the populace. Looking into the Chernobyl disaster, 30 km is just not enough distance, and even where we are (about 200 km from the site) it seems as if we are still at risk of enough poisoning that it can cause thyroid cancer.

I called the Australian embassy in Tokyo last night, to find out what I could. They told me that according to their current information the radiation was adequately contained and there’s no official policy regarding getting Australians who are currently in Japan back home.

Feeling generally pretty weird about having to go into work today, business as usual, Ingrid and I got to the train station to discover that the trains weren’t running. Like, ALL of them, excepting the shinkansen. Hundreds of Japanese workers and students milling around with no place to go. We were advised to go home by our area managers and that is why I am typing away at home right now. There seems to be no information available as to why the trains aren’t running, which is worrying, but that may just be because we are foreigners and information is much harder for us to get, let alone understand. Or it may be because the power plant is about to melt down. Who can say!

I’m pretty pissed off about the lack of information being provided to citizens regarding an uncontained melt down scenario and the media in general, and I figure it’s because of wanting to reduce panic. There was a lukewarm 2 minute segment on one of the morning shows today about some advice regarding avoiding radiation poisoning. Seriously, is that it? If you’re saying anything about it at all it means it’s a distinct possibility. If it’s a distinct possibility then shouldn’t you be devoting more time to educating the citizens to ensure their health and safety, and not on endless repeated footage of the earthquake and touching human stories regarding survival and loss?

Ingrid and I are at the stage of seriously considering returning home. This is pretty complicated as it would mean breaking our contracts, and organising an intercontinental move on such short notice is going to be a massive pain in the arse. Still, would you prefer cancer? Tough choice!

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