The emergency command center at Japan's stricken nuclear plant shook violently when hydrogen exploded at one reactor and the plant chief reacted by shouting, "This is serious, this is serious," new videos revealed about the crisis as it happened last year.
Tokyo Electric Power Co. initially refused to release the videos, but the company is now under state control and it was ordered to do so. The footage seen Monday was mainly of teleconferences between company headquarters in Tokyo and staff at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, after the March 11, 2011, tsunami caused critical damage to its reactors.
In the videos, then-plant chief Masao Yoshida complained about phone calls to the prime minister's office not getting through and showed frustration as he fought the government's nuclear safety officials interfering with technical suggestions that didn't fit the plant's conditions.
TEPCO made a 90-minute video of selected clips available for download, while journalists who registered beforehand were allowed to see 150 hours of coverage. The content was heavily edited, with white shades shielding workers' faces and nametags and beeps masking voices and other sound.