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Fukushima Daiichi NPS Prompt Report 2015

Fukushima Daiichi NPS Prompt Report (Mar 12, 2015)Prompt Report:President Hirose's 3.11 Speech to Fukushima Daiichi Employees

Looking back to this day four years ago, where I'm standing now in the emergency response center of the seismically isolated building: You were all responding to the unprecedented accident that happened after the huge tsunami struck this Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station.

Even now, our workers work all day and night in this building, and about 7,000 workers work at the site every day.

I would like to express my deepest gratitude for the tremendous efforts being made during the past four years. There was a huge amount of progress in the past year.

The most challenging achievement was the removal of fuel from the spent fuel pool at Unit 4. It is a fruit of the hard work of many people that we were able to complete the work safely and without incidents.

Measures to control rainwater represented another big achievement, addressing one of our largest concerns especially during the typhoon season in the year 2013. Various measures to prevent rainwater containing radioactive materials taken since then enabled us to contain it by the summer of 2014.

The groundwater bypass system, which the fishermen agreed with us to operate, was another great success which enabled reduction by around 100 tons a day of water from getting contaminated by flowing into the reactor facilities.

There was also a great effort toward Fukushima revitalization. I believe that our work to help repairing the houses of those who had to evacuate after the accident, and the other supportive activities, have helped at least a portion of the people's lives.

Today I would like to share two points with all of you:

1. Safety is our foremost priority
There has been discussion of about whether meeting schedules takes precedence over workers' safety at Fukushima Daiichi NPS. In my opinion, this discussion misses the point. The highest priority is always the workers' safety. We have learned the hard way that if accidents occur at Fukushima Daiichi NPS, the work flow at the site will be interrupted by inspection from a third party, such as local government, department, etc. Eventually, this will delay the schedule at the site. Therefore, ensuring the safety of workers is the most important thing in order to decontaminate the site. We shall never forget this.

2. We empathize with, and share the goals of, the public and especially of the people of Fukushima
The second thing I want to share with you is the need for us to have empathy for, and to have the same goal as, the general public and especially the people of Fukushima, who must start their road to recovery.

Of course, to the people of Fukushima, we will always be the perpetrator, and they will always be the victims, and that relationship will be difficult to alter. But I think it's important for us to share with them the same view of the future and the direction we are taking. We have caused great concern over the issue of non-disclosure of data concerning the drainage channel. This was a result of us not being able to empathize enough with the feelings of the people in the fisheries industry and their hopes of restarting their business. Truly understanding such feelings may be difficult, but I feel we must do this, and pave the road to recovery alongside and together with the people. This could be said of the electric power business in general, not just Fukushima and nuclear power.

It's still a long 30- to 40-year road ahead - but I look forward to continuing to make progress with all of your help.

Thank you.

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