Japan begins road to recovery
March 13th, 2011
11:43 PM ET

Japan quake live blog: Explosion at nuclear plant's reactor building

An 8.9-magnitude earthquake hit northern Japan early Friday, triggering tsunamis that caused widespread devastation and crippled a nuclear power plant. Are you in an affected area? Send an iReport. Read the full report on the quake, tsunami and the fears surrounding Japan's damaged nuclear reactors.

[11:43 p.m. ET Sunday, 12:43 p.m. Monday in Tokyo] Six people were injured after Monday morning's explosion at the building housing the No. 3 reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in northeastern Japan, Tokyo Electric Power Co. says. Seven people earlier reported as missing have been accounted for, a company official told reporters.

Japanese public broadcaster NHK showed images of white smoke rising above the facility. Citing the nation's nuclear and industrial agency, NHK said that a wall of one of the reactor's buildings had collapsed.

Japan's chief cabinet secretary said a day earlier that accumulating hydrogen gas "may potentially cause an explosion" in the building housing the No. 3 reactor at the Daiichi plant. A similar scenario played out Saturday, when a blast caused by hydrogen buildup blew the roof off a concrete building housing the plant's No. 1 reactor.

[11:33 p.m. ET Sunday, 12:33 p.m. Monday in Tokyo] The official death toll from the earthquake and the tsunami has risen to 1,627, authorities said Monday. This doesn't count the 2,000 bodies that the Kyodo news agency reported were found Monday in Miyagi Prefecture on Japan's east coast.

As of 10 a.m., at least 1,720 people were missing and 1,962 injured, according to the National Police Agency Emergency Disaster Headquarters. The number of dead is expected to go up as rescuers reach more hard-hit areas.

[10:59 p.m. ET, 11:59 a.m. Tokyo] An explosion happened late Monday morning at the Fukushima Daiichi's No. 3 nuclear reactor building, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano confirmed to reporters.

The container vessel surrounding the reactor remains intact, Edano said, citing the head of the nuclear plant report.

Japanese public broadcaster NHK showed images of white smoke rising above the facility, which is in northeastern Japan. Citing the nation's nuclear and industrial agency, NHK said that a wall of one of the reactor's buildings had collapsed.

Residents remaining within 20 kilometers of the plant, despite an earlier evacuation order, have been ordered to stay indoors, according to Edano.  The secretary added that initial reports suggested that radiation levels had increased after the blast, but Edano said he did not believe there was a massive leak, given that water continues to be injected into the reactors and that the pressure inside the reactor is "within a certain range."

Edano said a day earlier that accumulating hydrogen gas "may potentially cause an explosion" in the building housing the No. 3 reactor at the Daiichi plant. A similar scenario played out Saturday, when a blast caused by hydrogen buildup blew the roof off a concrete building housing the plant's No. 1 reactor.

[10:38 p.m. ET, 11:38 a.m. Tokyo] Approximately 2,000 bodies were found Monday in Miyagi Prefecture on Japan's east coast, the Kyodo news agency reported.

[10:31 p.m. ET, 11:31 a.m. Tokyo] Japan's nuclear safety and industrial agency reported sounds of an explosion at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant's No. 3 reactor, according to Japanese public broadcaster NHK.

White smoke could be seen rising from the facility at 11 a.m. Monday.

Workers have been flooding this reactor and the plant's No. 1 reactor with seawater to cool them after the earthquake and tsunami damaged the reactors' cooling systems.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said a day earlier that accumulating hydrogen gas "may potentially cause an explosion" in the building housing the No. 3 reactor at the Daiichi plant. A similar scenario played out Saturday, when a blast caused by hydrogen buildup blew the roof off a concrete building housing the plant's No. 1 reactor. The reactor and its containment system were not damaged in the explosion at the No. 1 reactor.

[9:39 p.m. ET, 10:39 a.m. Tokyo] The death toll from the earthquake and tsunami has risen to 1,598, with hundreds more missing, authorities say. At least 1,720 people were missing and 1,923 injured, according to the National Police Agency Emergency Disaster Headquarters. The number of dead is expected to go up as rescuers reach more hard-hit areas.

[9:29 p.m. ET, 10:29 a.m. Tokyo] An aftershock with a magnitude of 5.8 was recorded 27 minutes ago off Japan's east coast, about 140 kilometers northeast of Tokyo, the U.S. Geological Survey reports.

[9:09 p.m. ET, 10:09 a.m. Tokyo] Japan's NHK television network shows the rescue of three senior citizens who had been trapped in a tsunami-swept car for 20 hours.

[8:57 p.m. ET, 9:57 a.m. Tokyo] More information about the 60-year-old Japanese man who was rescued at sea Sunday after he was spotted clinging to the swept-away remains of his house: "I thought today was the last day of my life," Hiromitsu Shinkawa told his rescuers, according to Kyodo News Agency.

[8:51 p.m. ET, 9:51 a.m. Tokyo] The leading Japanese stock index skidded nearly 5% in the opening minutes Monday, the first full day of trading in Tokyo following last week's earthquake.

The Tokyo Stock Exchange opened as usual at 9 a.m. Japan time. The Nikkei-225 index tumbled 493 points, or 4.8%, to just above 9,700, according to the Nikkei website. It was down even further, almost 600 points, in the first few minutes before rebounding.

[8:32 p.m. ET, 9:32 a.m. Tokyo] In the following video, a victim of the tsunami - rescued by the Japanese military - says water swept her out of her home, and that she clung to a tree and then a mat before she was helped.

[7:50 p.m. ET, 8:50 a.m. Tokyo] About 2.5 million households - just over 4% of the total in Japan - were without electricity Sunday, said Ichiro Fujisaki, the nation's ambassador to the United States. Rolling blackouts are expected in some areas to preserve electricity.

[6:35 p.m. ET, 7:35 a.m. Tokyo] The International Atomic Energy Agency says that - based on information the agency received from officials in Japan - investigators determined that radiation levels have returned to "normal" at one of the power plants previously flagged for concern.

The agency said that authorities have concluded that there were "no emissions of radioactivity" from the three reactors at the Onagawa nuclear plant.

"The current assumption of the Japanese authorities is that the increased level may have been due to a release of radioactive material from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant" located 135 kilometers (about 85 miles) north of Onagawa, the IAEA said.

Japanese officials still are concerned about the Fukushima Daiichi plant, where workers are flooding two reactors with seawater to keep them cool.

[5:34 p.m. ET, 6:34 a.m. Tokyo] While the full extent of the disaster's aftermath is not yet clear, the earthquake and tsunami that devastated parts of Japan could be the most expensive quake in history, CNNMoney reports. Losses from the quake, tsunami and fires will total at least $100 billion, including $20 billion in damage to residences and $40 billion in damage to infrastructure such as roads, rail and port facilities, catastrophe modeling firm Eqecat estimated.

[4:56 p.m. ET, 5:56 a.m. Tokyo] Japanese officials said Sunday they will backstop the country's financial system when markets reopen after Friday's devastating earthquake and tsunami, CNNMoney's Chris Isidore reports.

The Bank of Japan, in a statement, said it would monitor financial markets and the operation of banks and "stand ready to respond and act as necessary." The aim is to make sure the banks have enough cash on hand to meet demands of panicky investors and cover withdrawal demands of bank customers.

Friday afternoon's earthquake hit just before the close of trading in Japanese markets. The benchmark Nikkei 225 stock index dropped just over 100 points, or 1%, in the final minutes of trading and ended the day 1.7% lower.

[3:58 p.m. ET, 4:58 a.m. Tokyo] Japan's Kyodo News Agency has reported a dramatic rescue took place off Japan's coast Sunday, when a Japanese destroyer rescued a 60-year-old man at sea, some 15 kilometers (9 miles) off Fukushima prefecture.

The man, identified as Hiromitsu Shinkawa of Minami Soma, was swept away with his house during Friday's tsunami, Kyodo reported. He was spotted floating in the sea, waving a self-made red flag while standing on a piece of his house's roof. Shinkawa was quoted as telling rescuers he had left his home because of the quake, but returned home to grab some belongings with his wife when the tsunami hit. "I was saved by holding onto the roof," he said, "but my wife was swept away

[3:13 p.m. ET, 4:13 a.m. Tokyo] Japanese media report 42 people were rescued Sunday in Minami Sanriku, a northeastern Japanese town where an estimated 9,500 people - more than half the town's 18,000 population - are unaccounted for.

[2:16 p.m. ET, 3:16 a.m. Tokyo] Delta Airlines resumed its full flight schedule to Japan on Sunday.

[1:54 p.m. ET, 2:54 a.m. Tokyo] Numerous U.S. rescue and assistance teams arrived Sunday in Japan and are helping lead a broad international effort to bring relief to areas ravaged by Friday's earthquake and tsunami.

The United States, the United Kingdom, China, and South Korea are among 69 governments that have offered to help, Kyodo News Agency reported, citing the Japanese foreign ministry.

Aid groups such as the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies have sent teams to some of the worst-hit areas, including Sendai, Narita, Asahi and Tokyo. Mercy Corps International teamed with Peace Winds Japan to rush aid to affected regions.

[12:36 p.m. ET, 1:36 a.m. Tokyo] The death toll from the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan late last week rose to 1,597, with hundreds more missing, authorities said early Monday.

As of 12:01 a.m. (11:01 a.m. ET), at least 1,481 people were missing and 1,923 injured, according to the National Police Agency Emergency Disaster Headquarters.

The number of dead is expected to go up as rescuers reach more hard-hit areas.

[11:00 a.m. ET, 12:00 a.m. Tokyo] The death toll from the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan on Friday rose to 1,353, with hundreds more missing, authorities said Sunday.

As of 9:30 p.m. (8:30 a.m. ET), at least 1,085 people were missing and 1,743 injured, according to the National Police Agency Emergency Disaster Headquarters.

[10:39 a.m. ET, 11:39 p.m. Tokyo] A state of emergency has been declared at a nuclear power plant in Onagawa, Japan, where excessive radiation levels have been recorded following Friday's massive earthquake, the United Nations' atomic watchdog agency said Sunday.

Authorities have told the agency that the three reactor units at the Onagawa plant "are under control."

[10:21 a.m. ET, 11:21 p.m. Tokyo] As international aid began to flow into Japan on Sunday, China's Red Cross said it would donate around $152,000 dollars in emergency aid to its Japanese counterpart, China's official Xinhua News Agency reported.

[9:48 a.m. ET, 10:48 p.m. Tokyo] South Korea planned to send a 102-member rescue team to Japan on Sunday, South Korea's Yonhap news agency reported.

South Korea has also arranged for shipments of liquified natural gas to be sent to Japan, the agency said.

[9:10 a.m. ET, 10:10 p.m. Tokyo] Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan called on his country Sunday to prepare for sacrifice and to work together in overcoming the effects of the devastating earthquake and tsunami.

"We Japanese had a lot of difficulties in the past, but we were able to overcome those difficulties to reach this peaceful and prosperous society we have been able to build. So with regard to the earthquake and tsunami, I am confident that the Japanese people can be united to work together. ...  I ask each one of you, please have such determination, and deepen your bond with your family members, your neighbors, and the people in your community to overcome this crisis so that Japan can be a better place. We can do it together."

[8:07 a.m. ET, 9:07 p.m. Tokyo] The death toll from the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan on Friday rose to 1,217, with hundreds more missing, authorities said Sunday.

As of 7:30 p.m. (6:30 a.m. ET), at least 1,086 people were missing and 1,741 injured, according to the National Police Agency Emergency Disaster Headquarters.

The number of dead is expected to go up as rescuers reach more hard-hit areas.

[7:57 a.m. ET, 8:57 p.m. Tokyo] Some 12,000 people have been rescued from the ruins of Friday's massive earthquake in Japan, Prime Minister Naoto Kan said late Sunday.

[7:30 a.m. ET, 8:30 p.m. Tokyo] The USS Ronald Reagan has started delivering aid in the coastal regions of Japan's Miyagi prefecture. Crew members, in conjunction with the Japan Maritime Self Defense Forces, have conducted 20 sorties delivering aid pallets using eight U.S. and Japanese helicopters, according to Sgt. Maj. Stephen Valley of U.S. Forces Japan.

The Kyodo news agency reported that the team hopes to deliver 30,000 portions of emergency food rations in this initial operation.

[7:08 a.m. ET, 8:08 p.m. Tokyo] Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan has ordered a Tokyo power company to conduct a widespread power outage in an effort to preserve energy as workers try to repair power plants damaged in Friday's devastating earthquake.

[6:45 a.m. ET, 7:45 p.m. Tokyo] There is a 70% likelihood that Japan will experience an earthquake of 7.0 or above in the next three days, the country's meteorological agency said.

Takashi Yokota, director the Earthquake Prediction Information Division of the agency said he based his prediction on increased tectonic activity.

[5:37 a.m. ET, 6:37 p.m. Tokyo] Japan Meteorological Agency has canceled all tsunami advisories. Meanwhile, the death toll from the quake rose on Sunday to 977 dead. At least 739 people are missing and 1,683 are injured, according to the National Police Agency Emergency Disaster Headquarters.

[4:47 a.m. ET, 5:47 p.m. Tokyo] A round of sirens urged people to go to higher ground in Sendai, a city affected days earlier by a tsunami. The tsunami advisories by local officials were prompted by aftershocks following an 8.9-magnitude earthquake that struck last week.

[3:46 a.m. ET, 4:46 p.m. Tokyo] A second explosion could occur at an earthquake-struck nuclear plant in northeastern Japan, a government official told reporters Sunday. Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said an explosion could occur in the buliding housing the No. 3 reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi plant.

[3:12 a.m. ET, 4:12 p.m. Tokyo] At least 160 people are being tested for radiation exposure after tens of thousands of residents were evacuated in the wake of an explosion at a nuclear reactor damaged by Friday's massive quake and tsunami. FULL STORY

[1:55 a.m. ET, 3:55 p.m. Tokyo] According to Japan's Kyodo News, the magnitude of the devastating quake was revised upward on Sunday from 8.8 to 9.0, making it one of the largest in history, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

[12:21 a.m. ET, 2:21 p.m. Tokyo]The death toll from the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan late last week rose to 801, with hundreds more missing, authorities said Sunday. At least 733 are missing, according to the National Police Agency Emergency Disaster Headquarters. The number of dead is expected to go up as rescuers reach more hard-hit areas.

[12:21 a.m. ET, 2:21 p.m. Tokyo] Sgt. Major Stephen Valley, spokesman for U.S.  Forces on Japan, tells CNN that the aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan has arrived off the waters of northern Honshu and is operational, preparing for relief efforts.

soundoff (231 Responses)
  1. denise

    It frustrates me that all the interviews with nuclear experts never talk about what a meltdown actually means-where does the radioactive material g?what are the effects/symptoms/implications of radioactive exposure? if it goes over the ocean-what then? what concentrations are of concern,?does ths material come back down to land and what then?...etc? i am particularly appalled by the fact that so manyreporters/interviewees are saying -it will hopefully go over the ocean-as if that's the end of the story. Your reporters seem to be skirting the real questions.

    March 13, 2011 at 12:44 am | Report abuse |
    • TIong Soon Lee

      Why is it that the engineers in Fukishima have not started cooling down the reactors with liquid nitrogen yet? The reactors are designed to work with liquid water in, and liquid water out, and the reason why they are having problems is because its liquid water in, steam out right now. If that is the case, they might as well use liquid nitrogen. Russia used liquid nitrogen in Chernobyl. Why haven't they started to pump liquid nitrogen into the reactors yet is my question? Can someone send a message to them to consider this action?

      March 13, 2011 at 1:51 am | Report abuse |
    • MCA

      "Russia used liquid nitrogen in Chernobyl. Why haven't they started to pump liquid nitrogen into the reactors yet is my question"

      Because the temperature difference will crack the reactor containment casing which will release extreme amounts of radiation into the atmosphere, we could call that Chernobyl 2.

      March 13, 2011 at 3:13 am | Report abuse |
    • Trent Tanaka

      First off, this situation is over. It ended today when they poured seawater into the reactors.

      They don't need to use liquid nitrogen to cool and cover the fuel cells because they been using seawater.

      This is nothing like Chernobyl people. The three reactors in Fukushima automatically shut down the moment the earth quake happened. All three reactors had dropped their control rods and they were fully grounded. The reactors were subcritical mean no nuclear reaction was taking place.

      They were dealing with cooling the decay heat from a reactor that has been shutdown.

      March 13, 2011 at 4:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Drew

      Well if it is a sub critical reaction that is happening since the quake, where did all the cesium from those rods come from into the environment? I was under the impression that in order for cesium to be released into the environment the rods would have had to have melted partially for exposure? One person is saying "meltdown" and someone else is saying oh it's nothing. Make your story work with what has been observed and reported, at least?

      March 13, 2011 at 5:17 am | Report abuse |
    • bjornebarn

      The reason that a little radioactivity was released was because there was a lack of water inside the reactor, which had been filled with air instead (to keep the pressure), but when they started filling it up with water again,that air had to go somewhere. In that air a few radioactive particles existed, however, they say that the area close by became like 30 times more radioactive than normal. 30 times the background radiation is NOT dagnerous, especially not for short periods.

      And even if a meltdown occurs, this will never turn into another Chernobyl out of several reason.
      1. The reactor will not explode in this case.
      2. In Chernobyl, graphite rods were used as moderator, while in the Fukushima plants water is used. After the explosion in Chernobyl, the graphite rods started burning, a type of fire that is extremely difficult to extinguish and that burns really hot. This fire made all the radioactive particles inside the reactor to enter the air, and since the reactor had exploded, there was nothing stopping it from going out in the atmosphere.

      March 13, 2011 at 9:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Mike Sorrentino

      Whats Next seems like nobody is covering the Fact that this is happening to this world as the planets begin alignment in 2012 it starts in 2011 Scientist predict it would begin and the Media is not asking Questions. This will continue to happen until 2012 comes in place start interviewing scientist from Nasa Slorar Flares from the Sun is in a Cylcle that the poles will reverse.

      March 13, 2011 at 9:19 am | Report abuse |
    • JDB

      Denise, great comment. CNN needs to define meltdown or stop using it! The problem is they can not. They have been incredibly innacurate on thier coverage of the nuclear issues. All they are doing in sensationalizing and scaring people.

      March 13, 2011 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
    • bob

      I agree, every time it gets interesting in a sientific way, the journalists look at the "sience guy" like he has 3 heads and they change the subject! Their are sum educated individuals out here that would like to learn! I want to know if they can use liquid nitrogen with the boron to cool the Reactor? Or is it too late to cool?

      March 13, 2011 at 10:31 am | Report abuse |
    • PJ

      Just think of all the animals that are already dying or have died on earth. If we poison more creatures with radiation in the Pacific even though it will be dissipated over time and space – animals can get cancer and radiation poisoning too, not just humans. Folks we are KILLING THE PLANET. Who/what will survive? God help us! We need PRAYER!

      March 13, 2011 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
    • RussianPhysisist

      About the analogy with Chernobyl catastrophe. It may or may not be correct. The hydrogen and its explosion was the key stage in the course of the Chernobyl disaster. It occurred inside the water-circulation system inside the reactor, when the temperature inside the cooling system exceeds the threshold of the water pyrolise (2H20->2H2+O2) . From that stage the water inside the reactor stopped to be a stabilizing factor, became the explosive material and the internal destruction did not allow to drop the system of neutron-absorbing rods to stop the reaction.

      However, from what Tanaka-san wrote, the reactor already had been stopped already. Therefore, everything which occurred about hydrogen, is a bad thing and probably will increase radiation level, but this is not a Chernobyl-like nuclear disaster.

      March 13, 2011 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hans van de Koppel

      Why did CNN broadcast these headlines?
      1. "United States flies in 'cooling fluid' '" (which is water in this case): stupid CNN mistake
      2. "Chance of second nuclear explosion" even a first one did not happen because we are not talking about bombs but about damaged reactors who cannot become a nuclear bomb, if a nuclear explosion would have happened, you would have notices the difference ...: huge CNN mistake upsetting millions of people

      March 13, 2011 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ed_P

      If a melt down is the worst of all possible disasters, why not bring in every fire truck pumper in the nation and connect them to the cooling input too cool the reactor. Let the overflow run into the ocean resulting in a less devastating problem?

      March 13, 2011 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Betty

      I am concerned about what's NOT being said. As with Three Mile Island, in an attempt to "prevent panic", there were so many lies about what was happening. .When the truth came out, it was too late. Radiation had been released and contaminated the population. Take heed.

      March 13, 2011 at 4:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Debbie Barlow

      I am worried about what the shift of the Earth's Axis is going to do to the weather patterns. Plus if the plants melt down, how will the fallout affect the rest of the world?

      March 13, 2011 at 4:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      Lee asked why have not they use LN to cool down the reactors. The CNN guy said there is no difference because the core is too hot. There actually is a big difference because the heat is caused by neutrons and water is much effective in cooling down the neutrons due to the hydrogen atoms in the water.

      March 13, 2011 at 8:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Matt A

      a melt-down is just what the name describes....when a nuclear reactor reaches a certain temperature, the reaction is no longer controllable, therefore the heat given off will cause the reactor to literally melt through the containers and keep reacting and cause immense radiation. Liquid Nitrogen to cool it will literally cause an explosion at these temperatures which will cause more death toll rather than just evacuating.

      March 13, 2011 at 10:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tim R

      Well, in my opinion you gotta learn to read between the lines. Obviously none of the things you listed can be predicted. The real take-home message, I'd say, is "we just don't know, it's not possible to predict this – so don't panic 'cause that wouldn't accomplish anything." The good news is that the levels of radioactivity released seem to be quite low.
      By the way, obviously there's going to be a huge backlash against the nuclear industry from this. But consider the alternativs – coal? I've heard there's really no such thing as "clean coal," and the carcinogens and toxins from coal, oil and diesel kill thousands or even tens of thousands every year. Solar? Hydropower? I've heard that the reality is that neither actually provide enough power to fuel an industrial nation – ever – no matter how many dams, etc. are built, it's just simply not enough electricity. That leaves nuclear – I have mixed feelings about it but "this is not your grandfather's nuclear plant," as the saying goes. It seems it's actually quite under control these days – except the tiny little problem of the nuclear waste. But maybe we gotta choose the lesser of two evils here; coal and diesel REALLY ARE killing people, *every* year, and damaging the environment. 'Ya gotta pick your poison.

      March 13, 2011 at 11:16 pm | Report abuse |
  2. rosset

    I'm from Honduras i want to know if others countries'll have problems about radiation??

    March 13, 2011 at 12:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Love Honduras

      It is doubtful that radiation from that far away will reach the Americas with any dangerous concentration.

      March 13, 2011 at 9:33 pm | Report abuse |
  3. denise

    I'm with you-and I'm wondering why there's no way to e-mail CNN directly-is anyone from there actually reading this?

    March 13, 2011 at 12:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Louis Erskine

      I don't know how to contact CNN directly–but I agree with you and many others who have called attention to CNN's often inaccurate and certainly sensationalizing coverage. We don't seem able to reach anyone at CNN to ask them to reel in their coverage. From 3AM Eastern (US) time to 7AM, Ilistened to them repeating NONSENSE!! At thid time, there id nobody reporting what is actually happening. I have NYTimes as well, and hey are simply repeating what CNN says.

      March 13, 2011 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
  4. Patrick

    Denise, you can find most of that information via google. Wikipedia can explain what a meltdown is. It's easy to find information on radiation exposure online.

    The reason it would be ideal for radiation to go into the ocean is because the water would dilute radiation levels to safe levels. Which is why so many nuclear reactors are located on the ocean.

    March 13, 2011 at 12:57 am | Report abuse |
    • bob

      Patrick, My brother is in this business, He said that the biggest concern when building is that there isn't a drinking water supply under the reactor. Worse case is a meltdown into the earth and it coming in contact with a societies drinking water. He didn't say anything about ocean dispersion. A good question for the Sience Guy.

      March 13, 2011 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
  5. tomn8r

    yes, there are rooms of analyists reading all of the cnn comments. the intriguing ones are sent off to the ultra secret 'forum pickers' battalions stationed outside of every major city in narth america. these 'pickers' go to the houses of intelligent, open minded people and hire them for their alien research. unfortunately, all of my comments are quickly deleted as i have been flagged for obstruction of this new world order. the drones are in shipping containers around the globe. as soon as they are ready they will pounce and every1 will be enslaved. quick....run!

    March 13, 2011 at 1:02 am | Report abuse |
    • Liri

      LOL! I know... as if the commenters on CNN's website are that important in the big picture. It really is amazing to me how stupid people can be.

      March 13, 2011 at 9:24 am | Report abuse |
    • bob

      Look folks Charlie Sheen is blogging here!

      March 13, 2011 at 10:45 am | Report abuse |
  6. John

    I cannot believe what I just watched on CNN. Chad Meyers seriously needs to return to a grade 7 science class. This guy just stood up and lectured us on national television on how a nuclear reactor works with an explanation that 1) was factually wrong on several accounts and 2) he was obviously uncomfortable with it and didn't have a clue what he was talking about. Here's a clue, Chad... the reactor creates heat that warms a closed system of heavy water. That heavy water warms regular water to produce steam. That steam spins a turbine to generate electricity. What you said was that the turbine generates heat that heats water that spins the turbine. Seriously?

    I expected better from CNN. This was pathetic. Get someone in that's not a B-grade journalism grad... get a specialist that knows something about science.

    March 13, 2011 at 1:09 am | Report abuse |
    • john

      I agree, they should have worked on that a little more before airing it!

      March 13, 2011 at 8:35 am | Report abuse |
    • roger

      The expert from Georgia Tech said that Chernobyl did not have a reinforced dome, that is was just a reactor in an industrial building. That is simply not correct. Chernobyl did have a dome and there were many similar reactor sites with similar domes in Europe and all were certified by the global inspectors, what is now the IAEA.
      Let us hope that we don't get another dome blown to pieces by a satanical method of boiling water.

      March 13, 2011 at 7:02 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Inoriekay

    Latest post on the Nuclear plants (needs translator or google chrome to view in English).
    http://www3.nhk.or.jp/news/genpatsu-fukushima/

    March 13, 2011 at 1:09 am | Report abuse |
  8. markc51569

    i agree what if there is a melt down no one is talking about that what about the oil re fineries up in smoke how long does that stay in the atmosphere or the rain for that fact the radiation the released where does it go in the air shouls we in the united states be worried about it what about Hawaii and Alaska how far can the radiation go

    March 13, 2011 at 1:28 am | Report abuse |
    • bob

      I would like to know how much of the hype is from the coal and oil companies. My brother is a nuke guy and he says as long as there is not a fresh water supply under the reactor, all should be manageable.

      March 13, 2011 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
  9. markc51569

    i getting nervous about the melt downs

    March 13, 2011 at 1:29 am | Report abuse |
  10. markc51569

    if they melt down where does the radiation go

    March 13, 2011 at 1:31 am | Report abuse |
    • Drew

      The same place all the radiation during the atom bomb tests from the 40s 50s and 60s.. above ground.. All of those clouds were the same stuff. They rain down in places.. and get into the food chain. There is nothing you can do about it.

      March 13, 2011 at 5:20 am | Report abuse |
    • RussianPhysisist

      If it melts down, it will leak down to the basement. If there is no source for further heating, then the leakage outside may occur only with this wonderful ocean water which is now pumped inside, or with the hydrogen explosion.

      March 13, 2011 at 1:20 pm | Report abuse |
  11. BSNE

    The majority of the core goes to the bottom of the vessel. These are the heavy metals and the cladding material. There are fission product gases that are released when the cladding is breached. At TMI most of this plated out on the relatively cooler piping. What is left is either contained and allowed to decay (relatively short half lifes) or is vented to the atmosphere. The amount of the gases that are released is directly dependent on the amount of the fuel cladding that is breached. Hope this helps.

    March 13, 2011 at 1:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Louis Erskine

      My word! There is as much stupidity on this blog as on CNN!!

      March 13, 2011 at 10:12 am | Report abuse |
  12. Tinky

    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bVGpQRqsyoU/TXtB2j6epII/AAAAAAAAGus/3chHQpfGWSw/s1600/Fukushima4.JPG

    March 13, 2011 at 3:05 am | Report abuse |
  13. Nuc Eng

    I wish CNN and the other news organizations would research a little before discussing a topic. People are not tested for radiation exposure; they are tested for radioactive contamination. The nuance is significant. Even in the very remote event the people are discovered contaminated, they can be decontaminated and receive very little overall exposure.

    March 13, 2011 at 3:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Drew

      That's a good point. However you can't remove it once it is in your lungs or stomach.

      March 13, 2011 at 5:23 am | Report abuse |
  14. Amanda Bull

    So much for Journalism.. CNN needs to get your information correct or that the USGS has not updated their webpage which I highly doubt. So far according to usgs.gov it still remains at an 8.9M. So please either quit falsifying information more than it needs to be or get your friken facts right and get dedicated journalists not lazy ones who like round numbers up. I know my information I have been researching earthquakes for the past week for my college speech. Its disguisting to know that a college student has more acurate information than lazy journalists..

    March 13, 2011 at 4:17 am | Report abuse |
  15. Trent Tanaka

    k

    March 13, 2011 at 5:05 am | Report abuse |
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