Six and a half decades after the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki during the second world war, a powerful earthquake plunged Japan into another nuclear crisis. The only difference is that the current one is not man-made.
The 8.9-magnitude earthquake that stuck Japan's Pacific Coast on Friday afternoon, triggered off a wave of destruction with a subsequent tsunami, besides fires and landslides.
On Sunday, Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano confirmed two nuclear reactors may have experienced a partial meltdown, with a possible explosion imminent at a second reactor at the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant in northeastern Japan.
On Saturday, the fears turned reality when an explosion hit the building containing the No 1 reactor at the Fukushima Number One plant.
Soon, another blast followed in the building around the No 3 reactor at the Fukushima Number One plant. Edano informed that it was caused by a build-up of hydrogen. The second hydrogen explosion in three days occurred at the troubled Dai-ichi plant Monday morning, injuring six workers.
While Edano assured that the soundness of the reactor container has been maintained, Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) said radiation levels at Unit 3 were 10.65 microsieverts, significantly under the 500 microsieverts at which a nuclear operator must file a report to the government.
While a large portion of the country is submerged in the ruins caused by the earthquake and tsunami, fears of radiation has led to mass evacuations in the areas around the nuclear plants.
Start the slideshow to see photos of the evacuations, radiation fears, and the apparant commencement of a nuclear crisis: