5 Juillet 2012
July 5, 2012
TEPCO, government, react to panel report
The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant has come out against a Diet-appoited panel's view that last year's earthquake, and not just the tsunami, may have damaged the plant.
Tokyo Electric Power Company spokesman Junichi Matsumoto told reporters on Thursday that operation records and other data do not suggest any damage came from the jolt.
Matsumoto was commenting on the expert panel's report released earlier in the day, which said it cannot be ruled out that damage to key safety systems came from the jolt.
But he added that the company will carefully study the report before deciding what to do.
Meanwhile, the government's top spokesman said he wants to express respect for the panel's efforts in issuing the report based on intensive hearings.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura told reporters that the government will take necessary steps by taking the panel's views seriously, along with a government panel's report expected later in July.
Industry minister Yukio Edano, who was chief Cabinet secretary at the time of the accident, also said he will take Thursday's report seriously.
Edano said the government will act with a serious awareness that the accident still leaves Fukushima prefectural residents and others facing a lot of difficulties.