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HOME  > Past issues  > 2012 May 9 - 15  > Former nuclear power plant worker testifies to obtain compensation
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2012 May 9 - 15 [NUCLEAR CRISIS]

Former nuclear power plant worker testifies to obtain compensation

May 10, 2012
“I was not told about the danger of radioactive substances in advance,” a former nuclear power plant worker said on May 9 during oral proceedings in a lawsuit against the state.

The plaintiff is former plumber Umeda Ryusuke, 76. In 1979 he started to work in nuclear reactor buildings at the Shimane plant (Matsue City, Shimane Pref.) and the Tsuruga plant (Tsuruga City, Fukui Pref.). Soon after, he began suffering from severe fatigue, nausea, and nosebleeds. He later had a cardiac infarction. He claimed workers’ compensation for his cardiac disease on a doctor’s advice, but the authorities rejected the claim.

Umeda testified that he was forced to work even when the radiation counter was beeping. “Many workers are still being exposed to radiation. I request the court to acknowledge the actual condition of NPP workers who have been used and thrown away like machine parts and give a fair decision,” he said.

A lawyer for the plaintiff pointed out that in cases filed by 1945 atomic bomb victims seeking the government’s recognition of their diseases as caused by radiation, a number of judgments admit cardiac infarctions as being caused by exposure to radiation. “This trial will have great significance to all NPP workers’ lives and health,” he emphasized.
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