FUKUSHIMA: Highly Radioactive Water Is Leaking From Three Reactors; Japan Urges Locals To Flee
Also Tokyo's government says tap water is safe for infants again, as radiation levels fall, according to Kyodo.
11:24 ET: TEPCO announced that highly radioactive water is leaking from reactors 1, 2, and 3, according to Kyodo. This will make repairs at the nuke plant significantly harder.
Nonetheless, fresh coolant has been injected into reactors 1 and 3 this evening.
EARLIER: Reactor core #3 is probably damaged, Japan's nuclear safety agency said Friday following the hospitalization of several plant workers yesterday.
Elevated radiation could be coming from a damaged reactor core or from cooling water. Either way radiation could increase.
Spokesman Hidehiko Nishiyama told a press conference: ''At present, our monitoring data suggest the (No. 3) reactor retains certain containment functions, but there is a good chance that the reactor has been damaged," according to Kyodo. The government is also considering bailing water out of reactor #3.
The government encouraged Japanese living within 18 miles of the nuclear plant to leave voluntarily.
There have been various reports that Japan is considering upgrading the crisis from 5 to 6 on the nuclear crisis scale.
Prime Minister Naoto Kan is expected to address the nation within hours.
Shares of plant-operator TEPKO dropped another 2.4% in Tokyo, after plunging 14% the previous day.