Luckily the external power has been restored to these "safe" nuclear power plants in Tohoku after the strong aftershock on April 7. However, Asahi Shinbun reports that the emergency backup power hardly worked in two of the nuclear power plants, and there is no plan to do anything about it anytime soon.
As one nuclear medicine specialist in Japan (of all places, from Nagasaki) had said to the worried audience in Fukushima last month, "Radiation is good for you, and only the pessimistic people will be affected negatively by radiation. So be cheerful. Trust me." (More on this government researcher later.)
Points from Asahi Shinbun (11:29PM JST 4/8/2011):
Tohoku Electric Power's Higashi-Doori Nuclear Power Plant (1 reactor):
2 external power lines (that's all they have) shut down after the April 7 aftershock, and switched to emergency diesel power
There are 3 emergency diesel power generators at the plant, but 2 of them are in maintenance and cannot be used, and weren't used during the power outage.
The remaining 1 diesel generator was used to cool the Spent Fuel Pool even after the external power was restored at about 3:30AM on April 8. However, the fuel was found leaking from the generator so it had to be shut down at 2:00PM on April 8.
There is no plan to replace or add diesel generators.
2 of the 3 external power line shut down after the April 7 aftershock
In the Reactor 1, 1 of the 2 emergency diesel power generators had been broken since April 1.
During the power outage, the plant operated on 1 external power, and 1 diesel power generator.
Water from the Spent Fuel Pool spilled because of the shaking from the aftershock, which they wiped off with a special cloth. [Brilliant design to have an open pool near the top of the Reactor building.]
For both plants, Tohoku Electric Power Company has no plan to do anything about the emergency diesel power generators. If the external power goes down again for any reason, Tohoku Electric says the power generating vehicles at the plant, which were sent to the plant after the Fukushima I Nuke Plant accident, would be sufficient to do the minimum cooling.
So Tohoku Electric may be just as "good" as TEPCO when it comes to a disaster planning.
And the citizens of Japan are required to feel "safe".