Eva Knott 9:36 a.m., May 23
Crew members of U.S.S. Ronald Reagan sue Japan, Tokyo Electric Power Company
Plaintiffs from San Diego-based ship claim they were lied to about radiation levels while assisting during Fukushima Daiichi disaster
Eight crewmembers of the U.S.S. Ronald Reagan, home-ported in San Diego, have sued the nation of Japan and its Tokyo Electric Power Company, claiming Navy rescue workers at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant were exposed to dangerous levels of radiation following the nuclear disaster there last year, Courthouse News Service reports.
“[Tokyo Electric] pursued a policy to cause rescuers, including the plaintiffs, to rush into an unsafe area which was too close to the [Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant] that had been damaged,” alleges the complaint. “The U.S. Navy was lulled into a false sense of security.”
Although there were 5,500 crew members aboard the Ronald Reagan at the time the incidents in question occurred, the suit is not class action in nature, and only lead plaintiff Lindsay R. Cooper and seven others, including one woman suing on behalf of her daughter, are represented.
The group goes on to accuse Tokyo Electric of “lying through their teeth about the reactor meltdowns at [Fukushima Daiichi].”
The plaintiffs seek $40 million in damages and another $100 million to establish a fund to cover future medical expenses due to “irreparable harm to their life expectancy, which has been shortened and cannot be restored to its prior condition.”