Thursday, January 12, 2012

Autopsy Planned (or Done) for the Worker Who Died at Fukushima I Nuke Plant?

(UPDATE from Ryuichi Kino: The police took the body right after the ambulance arrived at the hospital. So the worker had been dead. He's asking how TEPCO (who had the personnel at the hospital) considered the whole situation.)


Additional information about the worker who died of a heart attack on January 9, 2012 while working at Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant pouring concrete for the radioactive sludge storage facility.

According to the partial transcript of the TEPCO press conference on January 12, 2012 (independent journalist Ryuichi Kino asking TEPCO's Matsumoto):

  • The worker was "treated" on-site for 2 hours by the TEPCO doctor, which Kino said was rather unusual in the case of cardiopulmonary arrest.

  • When the worker arrived at the hospital in an ambulance, the hospital did no treatment and simply called the police, according to Kino, and TEPCO's Matsumoto didn't deny it. [So the worker was dead already.]

Then the hilarity ensued as the following:

Kino: "The hospital called the police to conduct an autopsy. Did TEPCO know about it or was involved in the decision?"

Matsumoto: "TEPCO had a personnel waiting at the hospital, but no we weren't involved in the decision to do the autopsy."

Kino: "TEPCO personnel was at the hospital? So you knew that the police would conduct autopsy?"

Matsumoto: "Well, not directly but from a subcontractor (construction company Shimizu) who was informed by the police that night."

Kino: "So you did know the worker was dead on January 9 but kept telling us he was receiving treatment, for two days?"

Matsumoto: "We had to be considerate to the family of the deceased. Besides, I didn't say he was receiving treatment. I said there was no new information from the hospital."

Kino: "You said in the press conference on January 9 that he was receiving treatment."

Matsumoto: "We heard about his death at 7:40PM on January 9. So at the time of the press conference at 6:00PM, our assumption was that he was still receiving treatment."

Pants on fire, but Matsumoto is totally comfortable lying through his teeth.

I am asking Kino for confirmation about the autopsy.


Nancy said...

What was TEPCO doing to this guy for 2 hours? It sounded like he was in cardiac arrest when he collapsed at the work site? If he was, the normal medical procedure is to do CPR and get them to a hospital ASAP. At least that is procedure in the US? Am I missing something or does this seem very suspicious? It is about time the police were involved in these worker deaths. They should be in every one of them at the plant.

Anonymous said...

If I was a "contract worker"--or any worker for TEPCO, this would give the the chills. What was NOT done for this poor man? Was the "TEPCO Clinic" set up for emergency traige? Not in any video we have seen yet..and the credentials of the doctors at the clinic? Since TEPCO is cheap, bet it was an unlicensed nurse or EMT, not a fully qualified physician. For the hospital to do an autopsy, something must have stunk to high heavens..

Anonymous said...

The death could have been as a result of violence. They would have to do an autopsy then.

Anonymous said...

someone with a baseball bat should try and put the fire out of matsumoto's pants.

Anonymous said...

If it was cardiac arrest it sounds as if they did not want this poor bloke to make it.

Anonymous said...

So he was dead on arrival and for some reason decided they should call the police immediately?

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

>So he was dead on arrival and for some reason decided they should call the police immediately?

Yup, that seems to be the case so far. And TEPCO's employee was right there at the hospital. Kino is still waiting for TEPCO's further explanation.

Anonymous said...

> Yup, that seems to be the case so far.

In my country, hospitals only do that when the conditions in which death occurred are highly suspicious, otherwise cause of death is determined and recorded by the physician in charge. Is it the same in Japan?

Anonymous said...

Assuming the hospital was told of the fact that the person had a cardiac arrest and was only sent to hospital 2 hours later, it sounded logical for the hospital to call the police for autopsy.

This is not DOA, this is moving a corpse from the scene of the crime to the hospital (to make it like the person died at the hospital).

Probably both risk management department and doctors opinion at work here.

Great story for Batista 4: the silent killer

Anonymous said...

It sounds like the deceased did not have a family to claim him/her.

It would be strange for TEPCO not to require emergency contact info as part of the induction process.

Either a homeless person or a case of hush hush money ??

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of the Abbott and Costello bit, "Who's on first?"

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