March 30, 2011
Onagawa Nuclear Plant Becomes Refugee Site

Can a nuclear power plant be designed to survive a tsunami? Tohuku Electric Power could teach Tepco lessons in nuclear power plant site construction.

Tohoku Electric Power Co.s Onagawa nuclear power plant was about 75 kilometers closer to the epicenter of the quake, and suffered no critical damage because it was built 15 meters above sea level, spokesman Yoshitake Kanda said.

What to do with a nuclear power plant after a tsunami? Silly question. Turn it into a refugee center of course. 240 residents of Onagawa are now living at their nuclear power plant.

ONAGAWA, Japan As a massive tsunami ravaged this Japanese fishing town, hundreds of residents fled for the safest place they knew: the local nuclear power plant.

The Onagawa nuke offers excellent accommodations for a tsunami refugee.

"I'm very happy here, everyone is grateful to the power company," said Mitsuko Saito, 63, whose house was leveled in the tsunami. "It's very clean inside. We have electricity and nice toilets."

Share |      Randall Parker, 2011 March 30 10:28 PM  Energy Nuclear

Jim said at March 31, 2011 4:52 PM:

Electricity and nice toilets-- pretty much says it all. :)

Phelps said at April 1, 2011 11:34 AM:

Really, all Americans want is cold beer, warm p----, and someplace to take a s--- with a door on it.

-- Mr. Ford, Frisky Dingo

Joseph Somsel said at April 1, 2011 12:32 PM:

Remember, Fukushima was the victim of a natural disaster - it was not an accident.

The nuclear designers can do a pretty good job of preventing accidents, but the design inputs on seismicity, tsunami wave height, tornado winds, etc, have to come from others. Predicting natural phenomena is still relatively inexact plus one has to balance costs with probablity.

I once worked at a nuke on the Southern coast. It sat upon a small built-up hill so to be above hurricane storm surges. The height was selected, I was told, because if the waves got into the plant, 75% of the customers would have drown already,

eots said at April 1, 2011 5:44 PM:

I had to laugh at "We have electricity and nice toilets." Lenin once said that communism is Soviet power plus electrification of the country. On another occasion he said that under communism everyone will have a golden toilet. Somewhere between the two, communism arrived to Japan. LOL!

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