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HOME  > Past issues  > 2012 July 18 - 24  > Lead-covered dosimeters underreport Fukushima workers’ radiation exposure
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2012 July 18 - 24 [NUCLEAR CRISIS]

Lead-covered dosimeters underreport Fukushima workers’ radiation exposure

July 22, 2012
A suspicion has risen regarding radiation dosimeters for workers engaged in recovery work at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, used in a way to intentionally record lower internal radiation doses.

According to a news report on July 21, TEPCO ordered the recovery work to its group company Tokyo Energy & Systems Inc., and the TEPCO affiliate subcontracted the work to a Fukushima-based construction company, Build-up. This subcontractor allegedly covered each dosimeter with a lead plate.

The labor ministry began investigating the case on suspicion of violating the Industrial Safety and Health Act.

Acceptable radiation exposure levels, under the current regulations, are 50 millisieverts a year for nuclear plant workers. Overexposure will result in restricting their work.

After the Fukushima accident, two workers under the age of 18 were discovered to be working at the Fukushima Daiichi in violation of the Labor Standards Law; organized crime syndicates are said to be involved in recovery work at the Fukushima plant; and the whereabouts of some workers who were left unchecked for internal exposure still remains unknown.

It is necessary to plunge a scalpel into the multi-layered subcontracting structure to prevent wrongdoing.
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