12 Mar '11, 12pm

Explosion at Japan nuclear plant, disaster toll rises

IWAKI, Japan (AP) - An explosion at a nuclear power station Saturday destroyed a building housing the reactor amid fears that it could melt down after being hit by a powerful earthquake and tsunami. Large amounts of radiation were spewing out and the evacuation area around the plant was expanded but officials did not know how dangerous the leak was to people. Shinji Kinjo, a spokesman for the Japanese nuclear agency, could not say how much radiation was in the atmosphere or how hot the reactor was following the failure of its cooling system. Friday's double disaster, which pulverized Japan's northeastern coast, has left 574 people dead by official count, although local media reports said at least 1,300 people may have been killed. Tokyo Power Electric, the utility that runs the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant, said four workers had suffered fractures and bruises and were being tr...

Full article: http://www.todayonline.com/World/EDC110312-0000126/Explos...

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