More bad news… Looks like a big explosion at the nuclear plant has stripped the outer cladding from one of the buildings. Many people are trying to flee the area and the authorities have set up a 40 mile exclusion zone to prevent anyone going in.
Here’s hoping that they can prevent a breech of the containment vessel. The Japanese have suffered more than enough from the quake and tsunami.
This from The Register
After sustaining heavy damage to its cooling systems during Friday’s megaquake, and after problems were encountered when damage mitigators attempted to release pressure that was building up in its reactors, Japan’s Fukushima nuclear reactor may now be toying with emulating a 1970′s potboiler. Athough information is still spotty, the No. 1 reactor at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant may be beginning to melt down.
Japan’s Kyodo News reported on Saturday afternoon, Japan time, in an article entitled “URGENT: Concerns of core partially melting at Fukushima nuke plant,” that there are indications that a reactor core at Fukushima No. 1 is, indeed, beginning to melt down.
“The core at Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant’s No. 1 reactor may be partially melting, the nuclear safety agency said Saturday,” Kyodo News reports. “Radioactive substance cesium was detected around the reactor,” they quoted that agency as admitting.
The Fukushima No. 1′s reactor No. 1 is only one of five Japanese reactors reeling after the megaquake: three at Fukushima No. 1, two at Fukushima No. 2.
Kyodo News has now reported that an “explosion was heard at 3:36 p.m. [Japan time] following large tremors and white smoke” at Fukushima No. 1′s reactor No. 1.
“Four people have been injured in an explosion that occurred at the No. 1 reactor of the quake-hit Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant,” Kyodo News said they had been told by Tokyo Electric Power Company.