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Japan rates Fukushima crisis at Chernobyl level

Japan rates Fukushima crisis at Chernobyl level (by Michael Kitchen)

TOKYO (MarketWatch) -- Japanese nuclear-safety authorities Tuesday raised their assessment of the crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant to the same level as the 1986 Chernobyl disaster. Japan's nuclear safety regulators put the crisis at level 7, the highest possible rating which had so far only been assigned to the Chernobyl incident. The situation had been rated at level 5, on par with the U.S. nuclear accident at the Three Mile Island nuclear plant in 1979. On Monday, Japan widened the evacuation area around Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s (JP:9501) (TKECY) damaged Fukushima Daiichi plant on safety concerns over radiation leaking from the facility.

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Japan rates Fukushima crisis at Chernobyl level