Nuclear experts watching the events at Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant say this is not “another Chernobyl”, but that it is a very risky situation.
“For the first time this morning, I’m frightened,” Sheffield University nuclear materials expert Prof Claire Corkhill tells me.
It appears that only one of six reactors at the plant is now operating.
Corkhill says the reactors are being taken “offline” which means “they’re shutting down the nuclear reaction and putting them into a safe and stable state”.
She adds this might have been Russia’s intention.
“If you want to target their power supply, you attack a building close to the power plant and force operators to shut it down,” she says.
Corkhill adds that a “worst-case scenario” would be that the plant’s electricity supply were damaged as “we could be looking at a scenario similar to what happened at Fukushima in 2011, where a loss of power led to a loss of cooling, which caused a meltdown of three of its nuclear reactors”.
Mwanwhile, Forty-seven people were killed in Russian air strikes on a residential district of the city of Chernihiv on Thursday, regional authorities have said.
Rescue work had to be suspended on Thursday due to heavy shelling, according to the local emergency services.
A total of 148 people, mostly civilians, have died since the beginning of hostilities in the region, the local authorities add.
The city of 300,000 people is in the north of the country, close to the borders with Russia and Belarus.