Eight US sailors have filed a lawsuit against the Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco) that owns the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant that melted down after an earthquake and tsunami struck in March, 2011. The soldiers who provided relief operations in the aftermath of the disaster claim that Tepco failed to release accurate information about the level of risk as a result of leaking radiation, as a result of which they were exposed to dangerous amounts.

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The soldiers filed their lawsuit against Tepco in a US federal court in San Diego. They are each seeking $10 million each in compensatory damages, $30m in punitive damages and an additional $100 million fund for medical expenses, the BBC reports. Tepco told the paper that they have yet to receive the complaint, which is the last in a series of claims totaling approximately 3.4 trillion yen.

The government has already provided 1 trillion yen in aid. Thousands of people were evacuated from the vicinity of Fukushima after authorities recorded fatally high levels of radiation. Tepco recently admitted that the meltdown could have been avoided.


Image of Fukushima victims, Japanese nuclear plant, Shutterstock