As reported by the Asahi Shimbun, two workers died on the same day from industrial accidents at TEPCO's Fukushima Daiichi (Daiichi means Number One) and Fukushima Daiini (Daiini means Number Two) nuclear power plants. One worker died after having fallen into a rainwater storage tank, due to an improperly secured safety harness. Another worker died after his head was caught in radioactive waste disposal machinery.
The two deaths occurred just four days after Fukushima Prefecture labor bureau officials warned TEPCO to increase worker training, in order to avoid industrial accidents, after a significant rise in recent months.
TEPCO has dramatically increased the workforce at the two plants, located just 12 km (7.5 mi) apart, since the wrecked reactors at Fukushima Daiichi entered full-fledged "decommissioning" phase activities. Many of the workers have never worked at nuclear plants before, and are entirely untrained.
In addition, protective radiation gear, such as face masks, obscure vision and make verbal communication difficult or impossible.
Not mentioned in this article are exposés over the past few years revealing that TEPCO subcontractors, including some with links to the Yakuza (Japanese mafia) have recruited heavily amongst homeless men to fill the workforce at Fukushima Daiichi. So many workers have already received their maximum allowable radiation exposures at Fukushima Daiichi, that TEPCO has had difficulty finding enough workers to take their place.
Fukushima Daiichi had a total of six reactors. Three operating reactors melted down, and a fourth, although defueled, nonetheless exploded, ruining them. The two others, although not operating and largely undamaged, have also been retired.
Fukushima Daiini, with operating four reactors, barely averted catastrophe itself on 3/11/11 and the days following. Cooling systems averted meltdowns thanks to a single offsite power line that survived the earthquake and tsunami. Several offsite power lines were lost, as were all onsite emergency diesel generators.