Japan underestimated the risk of a killer wave hitting its now-crippled Fukushima power plant according to UN atomic safety inspectors.
To avoid a repeat of the crisis, they have urged a rethink in the way nuclear facilities are built, run and regulated. Handing over a summary of their preliminary report to the Japanese government, the IAEA team said lessons could be learned globally.
“You can make nuclear plants safe against natural events but you have to understand those events very carefully and be able to predict them, not the timing but the size of them,” said IAEA team leader Michael Weightman.
Overall, Tokyo’s response to the nuclear crisis following the earthquake and tsunami that killed around 24,000 people was judged “exemplary.”
The disaster in March has prompted a rethink of energy policy in Japan and worldwide with Germany now vowing to abandon nuclear power.