Japan Nuclear Crisis Reaches Chernobyl Levels

By Mary Collins

April 12, 2011 Updated Apr 12, 2011 at 12:22 PM EDT

TOKYO (Indiana's NewsCenter) — Japan raised the severity level of the crisis at its crippled nuclear plant ranking it on par with the 1986 Chernobyl disaster.

Japanese nuclear regulators said the rating was being raised from 5 to 7 — the highest level on an international scale overseen by the International Atomic Energy Agency — after new assessments of radiation leaks from the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant since it was disabled by the March 11 tsunami.

Continued aftershocks following the 9.0-magnitude megaquake on March 11 have impeded work in stabilizing the Fukushima plant — the latest a 6.3-magnitude one Tuesday that prompted plant operator, TEPCO, to temporarily pull back workers

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