Tokai JCO Criticality Accident
Report 12/22/99 11:00
In Condolence of the Criticality Accident Victim
Dec. 22, 1999
Mr. Hisashi Ouchi who was exposed to massive amount of radiation passed away on December 21, 1999. Mr. Ouchi was the first Japanese victim of acute radiation injury. We pray that he will rest in peace.
The criticality accident at Tokai-mura was caused by only 1 mg of uranium, however, a number of JCO employees including Mr. Ouchi and local residents were exposed. This tragedy was brought about by the Japanese nuclear utilization policies that have so far been neglecting safety control for the inevitable accidents and danger that come with the utilization of nuclear materials. It is not an overstatement to say that Mr. Ouchi's death and the exposure of a number of people were brought about by the government's irresponsibility in propagating the fictitious "Safety Myth of Nuclear Energy," and the nuclear industries' negligence of safety control.
In addition, we must not forget that nuclear power generation is a system that cannot exist without an immense number of exposed workers. Even without an accident, the daily operation and regular inspections of the nuclear power plant require people to be exposed to radiation. There are exposed workers who are suffering from the effects right at this moment. Some of those exposed workers have passed away without fully living their lives, and it is an established fact that as long as power is generated by nuclear energy, the operation will keep generating exposed workers. An energy system that is based on victimizing people with radiation exposure is unacceptable.
JCO criticality accident brought to light many problems that stem from a society that relies an atomic energy. CNIC asserts that the most important lesson learned from this accident is that the Japanese nuclear energy policy is now in serious need to be reviewed from the very core of the program.