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Above I conflated the issues of venting and seawater flooding (though I suspect Dr. Kaku did, too), both of which came with delay after government orders. However, technical problems still apply in both cases, and at least for No. 1, the TEPCO-government conflict seems to have been over a suspension of seawater injection (which never actually happened) rather than starting it in the first place (see upthread). Here I will note the timeline on the seawater flooding at the No. 1 reactor:

  • end of freshwater injection (tanks run out): 12 March, 14:53
  • hydrogen explosion blows off the top: 12 March, 15:36
  • start of seawater injection: 12 March, 19:04

Considering the environment they had to work in to lay firehoses from the sea to an entry valve, with the explosion blowing stuff on top of them, those four hours (three and a half after the explosion) don't even seem that much of a delay.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Mon Jun 13th, 2011 at 05:42:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
On a broader note: since it was deduced later that water level gauges were malfunctioning, every decision taken at the time or what could have been taken at the time was based on mistaken assumptions.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Mon Jun 13th, 2011 at 05:48:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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