Japan Prepares For New Large-Scale Emission Of Radioactive Materials From Fukushima Nuclear Plant

GSDF holds emergency evacuation drill near stricken Fukushima nuclear plant (Mainichi, Sep. 13, 2011):

FUKUSHIMA — The Ground Self-Defense Force (GSDF) and residents of the zone between 20 and 30 kilometers from the stricken Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant held an emergency evacuation drill on Sept. 12.

The drill, held in preparation for any further large-scale emission of radioactive materials from the plant, was the first involving local residents. The GSDF held a similar drill without civilian participation in July.

The scenario for the drill presupposed further meltdown of the Fukushima plant’s No. 3 reactor core, and a local accumulation of radioactive materials emitting 20 millisieverts of radiation within the next four days. A total of some 400 GSDF personnel were deployed for the drill held in the municipalities of Minamisoma, Tamura, Kawauchi, Hirono, Tomioka and Naraha. Thirty-two municipal workers and firefighters along with 18 local residents also joined the drill.

According to the GSDF, its personnel were divided into teams to evacuate the 384 people in areas 20-30 kilometers from the plant who would have extreme difficulty fleeing any further disaster on their own, including some confined to bed. The operation involved 120 GSDF ground vehicles and six helicopters. GSDF personnel went to assigned homes to drive elderly residents to evacuation points, as well as hospitals to drive and fly patients to medical facilities in the city of Fukushima.

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