Marvelous understatement and grace under pressure, as described by Hiroko Tabuchi's New York Times article "Videos Shed Light on Chaos at Fukushima as a Nuclear Crisis Unfolded":
Shortly after an explosion rocked the stricken nuclear plant at Fukushima last year, blanketing the plant and nearby towns in radioactive material, Masao Yoshida, the plant's chief manager, rallied his men.
"I fear we are in acute danger," he said. "But let's calm down a little. Let's all take a deep breath. Inhale, exhale."
Worth putting in a box for use when needed:
|I fear we are in acute danger.|
But let's calm down a little.
Let's all take a deep breath.
Mr. Yoshida, according to Mr. Tabuchi, had a brain hemorrhage recently and has esophageal cancer (presumably unrelated to the nuclear accident). He defied his superiors during the event and kept injecting seawater into the reactor, likely preventing far greater disaster. He also took care of his men. "I'm truly sorry. Please proceed with the utmost care," he told them. Tabuchi's article concludes with:
One constant image in the videos is a line of white boards used to scribble data and work assignments.
A gaunt Mr. Yoshida recently said that he asked all his workers to sign one of the boards in case the worst happened.
"We thought it would be a record of the men who stayed to fight to the end," he said.