Two Nuclear Reactors Were Damaged by the Earthquake, BEFORE the Tsunami Hit ... and the Entire Nuclear Reactor Design Is Flawed

George Washington's picture

Bloomberg reported last week:

radiation alarm went off at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima
nuclear power plant before the tsunami hit on March 11, suggesting that
contrary to earlier assumptions the reactors were damaged by the
earthquake that spawned the wall of water.


A monitoring post on
the perimeter of the plant about 1.5 kilometers (1 mile) from the No. 1
reactor went off at 3:29 p.m., minutes before the station was
overwhelmed by the tsunami that knocked out backup power that kept
reactor cooling systems running, according to documents supplied by the
company. The monitor was set to go off at high levels of radiation, an
official said.

Nuclear expert Arnie Gundersen just confirmed that some of the Japanese nuclear reactors were severely damaged even before the tsunami hit.

Gundersen reports that the containment vessel at Fukushima 1 started
leaking and melting down before the tsunami hit. Similarly, Gundersen
notes that the fuel pool at reactor 4 cracked and started leaking after
the earthquake and before the water hit.

Remember that Japanese seismologists had warned for years that Japan's reactors were extremely vulnerable to earthquakes, with one top seismologist noting:

It's like a kamikaze terrorist wrapped in bombs just waiting to explode.

also points out that Florida's nuclear reactors are vulnerable to tidal
surges from hurricanes, and California's reactors vulnerable to tidal
surges caused by earthquakes.

And he notes that the attempt to release pressure at Fukushima failed 3 out of 3 times: 100% failure rate.

Gundersen notes that this shows that the entire design of these old-fashioned nuclear reactors is a failure.

Finally, Gundersen says - I've repeatedly noted - that conditions are in many ways even more precarious in the U.S. than in Japan.


The Implications of the Fukushima Accident on the World's Operating Reactors from Fairewinds Associates on Vimeo.

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The Heart's picture


Commercial news break please:

Radiation at Reactor No. 1 skyrockets — Now over 200 Sieverts per hour

The link does work now and it has really risen. There was a lot of smoke coming from number 1 yesterday on the live link. If this is accurate and true, then possibly what is about to hit thejet stream could really skyrocket. What, five days before it hits the west coast or less? And now there are no public links to any scientific endeavors to track the radiation fallout. The EPA and the rest of the supposed protectors are all shut up. Why?

People have commented there about the unusual growth of Dandelions and grass with out water being all healthy and green. Parsley in the garden is lush, dark green, and yet has had no real care or watering. What is alarming is if these reports from around the country all indicate somethingnoticeable is happening with the weeds, then one can only wonder about the fruits and vegetables that are now being grown for the food chain? Any and all information/discussion around this subject is appreciated.

dugorama's picture

but please not at yuka mtn.  that's no more a suitable storage facility than diablo canyon is.

PulauHantu29's picture

"It's only a tiny leak," the Japanese Gubberment told its people.

leeroper's picture

As soon as this happened I thought it was a very dangerous thing, Nuclear Reactors on a fault line. I don’t know if the whole of the country is on a fault line but it really doesn’t seem sensible to make a choice to draw power from Nuclear if this is the case. I had a debate with a friend about it and they were assuring me that it was because of the Tsunami and because we have never seen something this big ever before there was no way anyone could plan for it! Well this certainly adds to the story and my debate :)

Clycntct's picture

LR "because of the Tsunami and because we have never seen something this big ever before there was no way anyone could plan for it!"

Do a point by point elaboration of the BS falsehoods being presented to you.

If you pick out each point it is very easy to get real facts on the issues.

And if you can't find it just ask on one of these threads.

Many perople will help you out if need be.

JW n FL's picture

Some of the Best Red Fishing in the World at Turkey Point! Trout! Snook! Reds! LOVE IT!!! I fish there hoping for a Godzilla Trout / Snook / Reds..


Wade fishing to get close in on the fingers.. is Lots of fun.. Dolphin.. when they are 3 feet away and in the water with you.. dont look like a dolphin! they look like a Huge Shark Fin! LOL! and that happens ALL the time!

Diamond Jim's picture

thorium bitchez.....

Mentalic's picture

More ominous signs at Fukushima...


Radiation at Reactor No. 1 skyrockets — Now over 200 Sieverts per hour

Edit: During the bailout, talks started in terms of billions and moved over to trillions.

Similarly, here, talks have moved from the range of mSv to Sv..

Wow...we no longer need any exaggerations ...



Money Squid's picture

After I get home and I want to relax a few minutes I watch the live video feed showing the four Fukushima reactor buildings. Tonight I notices a small but bright light in a dark area from the bottom right corner of the reactor building furthest to the right. About two minutes after seeing it the video was lost. Maybe the workers are welding, maybe the sunlight is reflecting, maybe there is recriticality. I dunno. But, when the video works you can see the white puffs of smoke constantly rising which Busby talks about. Here is a link to the live feed....when it works

Money Squid's picture

Whoa, video is back up, check it out. See the light?

PulauHantu29's picture

So who built these POS? Aren't theyu liable for some of the damages?

Juice Box's picture

I love the smell of radiation in the morning!

Ergo's picture

No one in the US will do anything that costs money until after a disaster happens.  And even then, who knows. 

Add in all the hanging knives above us, and the odds of a mass tragedy are concerning.  And since most people don't do disaster planning, things could get "exciting" quickly. 

Living on the gulf coast, we prep hurricane supplies and keep gas in the car.  (It's that time of year again.)  That's affordable to anyone.  This year, we have "hit-the-road" boxes and a new laptop.  If you don't get on the road fast, your problems multiply.  I was hoping for a quiet hurricane season, but all the weird weather has me concerned.  If any "eyes" head our way, we'll just spend a long weekend at grandpa's farm. 

astartes09's picture

Im not sure of any CA nuclear reactors that are in tidal wave zones.

goldfish1's picture

Point is, it was the earthquake that damaged the reactors.

dugorama's picture

and both diablo and san onofre are directly atop fault lines

Steaming_Wookie_Doo's picture

Diablo Canyon and San Onofre are on the Pacific coast. Granted we do not have tidal waves frequently, but it only needs to happen once.

janchup's picture

Instead of decommissioning the Mark I reactors in USA it would be more our style to ignore them.

NotApplicable's picture

Nah, obfuscation works just as well.

After all, who can forget the Lincoln Continental Mark I? Now that's an American classic!

serotonindumptruck's picture

It seems as if everything that can be said on this issue, has already been said. All we have left now is to try to enjoy the life we have left while we wait for the leukemias and malignant carcinomas to manifest themselves.

On a long enough timeline, we all develop cancer and die.


George Washington's picture

INCORRECT, sir!  Now that we know that banging our heads against the wall hurts, we should stop banging our heads ...

Now that we understand, we have to make sure it doesn't happen in the U.S., France, etc.


hardcleareye's picture

GW, I enjoy your writings. 

However, I doubt that voices of sanity will be heard above the nuclear industry lobbyist and the money they spread around. 

The Golden Rule, he with the gold rules and the voices of sanity do not have the gold.... 

falak pema's picture

"The Golden Rule, he with the gold rules and the voices of sanity do not have the gold.... "

That is hard to contradict in a web-sight that worships 'gold bugs'; as gold makes men bold in their desire for more of their own 'BS', human trait par excellence...Which to their eyes is gold. So it's not just gold, its the lust of alchemy where 'BS' becomes gold. What a spiral of ambition of hard, clear eyed power worshippers of sparkling nuclear gold.

hardcleareye's picture

"We have met the enemy and he is us,"  Pogo

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Resistance (to banging you head against the wall) is futile.

Bang away GW. You only recognize how much pain you're in when you stop.

Solution? Don't stop.

hardcleareye's picture

GW, I hadn't seen that skit in a long time, thank you for the laugh.  And while I do believe things have to change, I doubt that will occur until widespread true human suffering is realized. 

And then after a few generations humans will forget and the insanity will begin again.

The classic "darkness over light" human drama.

serotonindumptruck's picture

You are certainly more optimistic than I in this regard. Personally, hammering out our frustrations on a keyboard seems like an unrealistic proposition towards solving these problems.

Has anyone noticed the increasing level of seismic activity off the US West coast? We had a 4.6 event off the coast of Oregon yesterday.


flattrader's picture

Everybody stop bitching and hammer out some frustrations here--

Join the email alrert list under Take Action.

Wednesday May 18th was National Nuclear-Free Call-In Day.  I took part.

It was vastly more worthwhile than scanning the tiresome posts the have come to define ZH lately.

NotApplicable's picture

Oh, boy, an email alert list. Now that's action!

I notice they promote a "carbon-free future," LOL!

Try as hard as I might, I just can't imagine an Earth sans carbon. NIRS is nothing but another dead-end honeypot for those who believe they need to act, but refuse to believe they are not allowed to act in any meaningful way. So instead they engage in meaningless feel-gooderism.

If you'd rather do something meaningful, please stop supporting criminal orgs d.b.a. "government." What's tiresome is watching people pretend they are the boss of "public servants" who use the facade to dominate and steal from everyone.

flattrader's picture

Perhaps you missed the Call-In part that required someone to take action rather than bitch and talk tough.

Like I'm certain you no longer "support" the criminal've stopped paying federal, state, local taxes?

How's that not paying the federal and state gas tax working out for you?

I guess you walk everywhere?

hardcleareye's picture

Some of us have walked down this road one to many times.

The general population of the US is poorly educated, and because they have not been taught to "think critically" (not that they incapable of this, there is a difference) you are not going to successfully convey the importance of these "complex issues" to the general population at this time in history.

These efforts, while noble and valiant, are not going to be successful...

Brings to mind the story of Don Quixote.



bugs_'s picture

and learn the greater lesson of fukushima and move the spent fuel rods to yuka mountain ASAP.  We now know they are picking up "pieces of radiactive debris" all around the reactor site that was due to the initial explosions.  learn the lesson and move the piles of spent fuel.

aerial view's picture

Let's list the owners of the the U.S. plants so at least we know who's responsible when they irradiate us.

12ToothAssassin's picture

Diablo Canyon (great name huh?) near San Luis Obispo, CA is owned by Pacfic Gas & Electric (PG&E) -


San Onofre near San Clemente, CA is owned by Southern California Edison -

DosZap's picture

Hey Bud, they are GE, and "WE bring good things to Life".!

n9lhm's picture

and, "Progress is our most important product."

duo's picture

There's a GE commercial from 10 years ago where they brag about how great their TEPCO reactors are (were).

George Washington's picture

If you find the clip, you'll be famous...

falak pema's picture

GW : did you know that the french company Areva came on TV to affirm that it had a contract with TEPCO to treat the 100 000(?) tons of contaminated water that has accumulated, and that it has personnel who are inside the reactor(s) area. It confirmed that those reactors should have been shut down PRE tsunami as they were in a condition that was already compromised. So this corroborates your findings. I don't have access to details of the Areva report nor about their ongoing activity within the confines of Fukushima.

hardcleareye's picture

This is a link to the Areva 4-7-2011 Fukushima Report.

Anybody have a link to a Areva report, pre incident, suggesting compromised conditions, please share.

Azannoth's picture

Those designs where made at a time when radiation was not considered dangerous maybe even having a slight positive health effect, by the same people who discovered the benefit of fluoridating watter