Japan: Waiting game for stranded Leeds tsunami man

Pipes and other seafront facilities of Unit 1 reactor, not shown, are damaged at Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Okumamachi, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan, shortly after the complex was hit by the earthquake and tsunami. PIC: PA

Pipes and other seafront facilities of Unit 1 reactor, not shown, are damaged at Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Okumamachi, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan, shortly after the complex was hit by the earthquake and tsunami. PIC: PA

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A LEEDS man living in earthquake-hit Japan has told how he is waiting for the all clear before he returns to Tokyo.

Adam Pearson was forced to flee his home in the capital after radiation levels increased dramatically last week.

The drama was sparked by an 8.9-magnitude quake off the country’s east coast on Friday, March 11, which triggered a 30ft tsunami.

Coolings systems on four reactors at the Fukushima nuclear power station – 150 miles north of Tokyo – then failed and explosions at the plant led to 185,000 people being evacuated out of a 12-mile area around the site. Mr Pearson, who has lived in Japan for more than a decade, and wife Sayuri, 34, packed as many of their possessions as they could carry and caught a bullet train to Osaka.

They are now staying in Fukuoka in the south.

Mr Pearson told the YEP: “It has turned our lives upside down.

“It was my 40th birthday on Thursday. We celebrated in a hotel hundreds of miles away from where we live.

“But compared to the hundreds of thousands of people who are now homeless in the north, we feel very fortunate.

“We’re just watching the news daily and waiting until they get the power station sorted out.”

This week 300 workers at the Fukushima plant were reported to be winning their battle to restore power to the cooling systems.

The death toll has passed 10,000, according to Japanese police.

More than 17,440 people are listed as missing, and 2,775 as injured. Hundreds of thousands remain homeless.

Professor Peter Moizer, Dean of Leeds University Business School

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