The situation at the quake-hit Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant in northeastern Japan ”has worsened considerably,” the Institute for Science and International Security said in a statement released Tuesday.
Referring to fresh explosions that occurred earlier in the day at the site and problems in a pool storing spent nuclear fuel rods, the Washington-based think tank said, ”This accident can no longer be viewed as a level 4 on the International Nuclear and Radiological Events scale that ranks events from 1 to 7.”
Noting that a level 4 incident involves ”only local radiological consequences,” it said the ongoing crisis is ”now closer to a level 6, and it may unfortunately reach a level 7” — a worst case scenario with extensive health and environmental consequences.
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