NYTimes.com’s lead headline right now is about as horrifying as it gets: “Japan Faces Potential Nuclear Disaster as Radiation Levels Rise.” The lede:
Japan faced the likelihood of a catastrophic nuclear accident Tuesday morning, as an explosion at the most crippled of three reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station damaged its crucial steel containment structure, emergency workers were withdrawn from the plant, and much larger emissions of radioactive materials appeared immiment, according to official statements and industry executives informed about the developments.
Note the wording: the “likelihood of a catastrophic nuclear accident.”
I’ve been watching NHK’s English-language service at CNN.com. It is not reassuring, despite the cool élan of the on-air folks.