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March 13th, 2011 posted by Paul Rega, MD, FACEP March 13, 2011 @ 5:30 am

Meltdown: A catastrophic failure of the reactor core, with a potential for widespread radiation release. Did it happen? Not really sure.

Death toll, nuclear meltdown fears rise in Japan

By the CNN Wire Staff
March 13, 2011 — Updated 0912 GMT (1712 HKT)

“By Sunday afternoon, the death toll…….had risen to 801.

An additional 678 were missing…… Officials fear the numbers may climb once rescuers reach more hard-hit areas…..Officials do not know for certain whether there have been meltdowns at two reactors in a nuclear facility in the northeast, said Yukio Edano, the Chief Cabinet Secretary.

They are working under the presumption that such meltdowns have taken place as they attempt to cool down radioactive material and release pressure inside the reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi plant…….So far, there have been no indications of dangerously high radiation levels in the atmosphere, Edano said…..”

Flooding from Tsunami near Sendai, Japan (Credit: NASA)

NASA’s Terra satellite’s first view of northeastern Japan in the wake of a devastating earthquake and tsunami reveal extensive flooding along the coast. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) acquired the right image of the Sendai region on March 12, 2011, at 10:30 a.m. The left image, taken by Terra MODIS on February 26, 2011, is provided as a point of reference.

Water is black or dark blue in these images. It is difficult to see the coastline in the March 12 image, but a thin green line outlines the shore. This green line is higher-elevation land that is above water, presumably preventing the flood of water from returning to the sea. The flood indicator on the left image illustrates how far inland the flood extends.

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