Nuclear Safety Commission chief Haruki Madarame apologized Wednesday for mistakes and safety shortcomings that surfaced during the triple-meltdown crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 power plant and blamed them on bureaucrats and utilities that failed to heed calls for better disaster preparedness.
Madarame was summoned to the Diet to give unsworn testimony before a special committee investigating the causes of the disaster at the Tokyo Electric Power Co. plant.
“Aren’t you the leader of the organization? You’ve been blaming the bureaucrats and utilities, but aren’t you the person who is most questionable?” the panel member asked.
Madarame responded by stressing he has only been at the NSC’s helm for a short time.
“I have to admit that is true to a certain extent, but I myself became a member of the NSC two years ago,” he said. “It sounds like I am making excuses now, but I had been trying to (improve) various things in the first 11 months and then the disaster struck.”The panel also summoned Nobuaki Terasaka, former head of the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency.
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