Families of tsunami dead seek Tepco redress for delayed search


Relatives of people killed in the March 11, 2011, tsunami filed Thursday for compensation from Tokyo Electric Power Co., arguing the nuclear crisis triggered that day delayed the search for their loved ones.

The claim filed by 333 people from the town of Namie, Fukushima Prefecture, with the government’s nuclear crisis dispute settlement center in Tokyo demands that the utility pay ¥10 million per claimant.

According to their lawyers, 164 people who lived near the crippled nuclear plant lost their lives on 3/11.

All of victims apparently died within the 20-km no-go zone around the plant after the meltdowns started, the lawyers said.

The relatives claim that search operations were delayed for a month after the nuclear crisis started.

Morihisa Kanoya, the 72-year-old chairman of an association of relatives of the next of kin in Namie, said the families have borne considerable suffering and sadness and are now finally able to take the first step toward compensation.