“Nuclear plant workers have option to quit but not many doing so” via Kyodo News

Since the crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant began, triggered by the massive March 11 earthquake, 17 workers have suffered radiation of more than 100 millisieverts, the maximum level to which nuclear plant workers may be exposed per year.

They were among those engaged in critical work to lift the stricken six-reactor plant out of what has become for Japan an unprecedented nuclear disaster, amid high risks of exposure to radiation.

Tokyo Electric Power Co., the plant operator and the nation’s biggest utility, says it is ”up to each individual to decide whether or not to continue” working at the plant.

But an expert familiar with working conditions said that in the case of subcontractors, ”The reality is that they are not in a position to decline job offers that they may not like, because they know that would affect orders in the future.”

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