States of emergency have been declared at five nuclear reactors at two power plants in Japan following Friday’s devastating earthquakes and tsunami.
Fukushima Daiichi’s Unit 1 has been a concern since authorities discovered eight times the allowed radiation outside of the site and 1,000 times the allowed amount inside the control room for the unit. Difficulties arose in the cooling system when the diesel generators, which would normally have kept the system cooling, were incapacitated by the tsunami, causing the temperature and pressure to build. Currently, it is believed there is a high possibility of a meltdown in this reactor.
Several hours later, TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Co.), which operates the Fukushima Daiichi and nearby Fukushima Daini sites, announced that it had lost control of a second reactor at the Daiichi site and three additional reactors at the Daini location. The region being evacuated around the Daiichi facility was expanded and the region surrounding the Daini facility was also evacuated.
For more information, please see the MSNBC’s article, Emergencies declared at 5 Japan nuclear reactors; Reuter’s article Japan battles to contain nuclear crises after huge quake the International Atomic Energy Agency’s Alert Log Communication’s Update