Archive for August, 2004

A steam leak at No. 3 reactor in Mihama, Fukui has left at least four dead and seven injured on August 9. Mihama had been shut down by hand in 2002 for a leak in a facility next to the reactor. The Kansai Electric Power Co., KEPCO, which runs three nuclear power plants in Fukui have recently been eager to add a storage facility – check Japan Times article.

Previous problems
The Japan Nuclear Energy Safety Organization, JNES, carries information on incidents and failures for plants in Japan. You can find a direct link to the Mihama Power Station here.

Incidents for No. 3 include:
Nov. 15, 2002 – Manual shutdown
Nov. 15, 2000 – Defect found during periodic inspection
Sep. 1, 2000 – Defect found during periodic inspection
May 27, 1999 – Defect found during periodic inspection
Oct. 19, 1998 – Power reduction
Oct. 13, 1995 – Manual shutdown
May 12, 1995 – Troubles discovered during periodic inspection
Apr. 20, 1994 – Manual shutdown

KEPCO aware of risk
It seems that KEPCO was aware that the pipes could wear as thin as they did at Mihama No. 3 plant for over a decade. Despite this and a warning from the inspection firm in November the pipe remained uninspected. You can check Japan Times, or check Mainichi.

Apparently a couple of nude Caucasians committed suicide by leaping from the Keio Plaza Hotel in the wee hours of Sunday morning. Should be more reports around in the next few hours, but here’s the first one I saw on Mainichi Daily News (good site, you should bookmark it).

A gentleman in his 60s was reading a newspaper to study English in a plane. He came across a term in the newspaper and wrote it down so he could look it up. Another passenger, upon seing the term, alerted an attendent and the plane turned around, with the man in question being arrested. He was later released when it was realized he really was studying English.

What was on the piece of paper? Find out in The Japan Times.