(TOKYO) -- Earthquake damage at a Japanese nuclear power plant northeast of Tokyo has stoked fears of radioactive fallout unless the reactor's core can be cooled.
A state of emergency was declared Friday at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant when its cooling system failed to function properly after the nuclear reactor lost power and automatically shut down.
A meltdown could lead to a breach of the reactor's steel containment vessel and allow radiation to escape into an outer, concrete containment building, if not the environment.
Japanese officials said radiation has not leaked from the plant, but ordered 2,800 people living around the facility to evacuate their homes as a precaution.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the U.S. military transported coolant to the Fukushima nuclear plant and will continue to assist as needed.
Nearby, the turbine building at the Onagawa nuclear power plant burst into flames shortly after the earthquake and has since been extinguished. Another plant at the facility was also reported to be experiencing a water leak, according to Japanese officials.
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