20 Août 2016
August 19, 2016
Japan's labor ministry has certified that a former worker at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant is eligible for compensation for developing leukemia.
The man in his 50s had worked at the plant for nearly 4 years since April 2011, soon after the compound suffered a meltdown.
The ministry says the man was in charge of mechanical repairs at the plant. It says he developed leukemia in January last year, and applied for workers' compensation.
Ministry officials say the man's radiation exposure has reached 54.4 millisieverts, and that they found no other plausible causes except his work.
He is the 2nd person to be awarded compensation in connection with the accident, following a case last October involving another man with leukemia.
In all, 14 nuclear plant workers in Japan have been granted compensation for work-related cancer.
About 47,000 people have worked at the Fukushima plant in the 5 years since the accident.
THE ASAHI SHIMBUN
August 20, 2016 at 16:15 JST
The labor ministry said a man who developed leukemia by helping in clean-up efforts at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant is entitled to work-related compensation.
It marks the second such case since the 2011 nuclear disaster.
The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare recognized that the cancer was due to exposure to radiation at the facility and said the government will cover his medical expenses.
The ministry said Aug. 19 that the man, who is in his 50s, was involved in removing debris and repairing machinery that handled radioactive water at the plant between April 2011, a month after the triple meltdown triggered by the earthquake and tsunami disaster, and January 2015.
His accumulative radiation exposure was 54.4 millisieverts.
The man worked for a contractor with Tokyo Electric Power Co., the operator of the nuclear complex.
He was diagnosed with leukemia in January 2015, and filed application for worker’s accident compensation at the Fukushima Labor Standards Inspection Office, a regional branch of the ministry.
Under the ministry’s guidelines, eligibility for work-related compensation in such cases is granted if leukemia is diagnosed after the person worked for more than a year in an assignment which resulted in an annual dose of more than 5 millisieverts.
The ministry’s decision to grant compensation in this case came after a panel of experts offered their opinions on the matter.
The ministry is scrutinizing the cases of five other former workers at the plant who have applied for compensation.
Compensation in such cases was first granted last October after a man in his early 40s was diagnosed with leukemia in January 2014. He was exposed to 16 millisieverts of radiation while he worked at the plant between 2012 and 2013.
Applications for the work-related compensation as a result of the Fukushima disaster are expected to increase in coming years, experts say.
According to TEPCO, those who had annual does of more than 5 millisieverts of radiation during fiscal 2015 numbered 4,952.