Area where hundreds may have died is isolated

Area where hundreds may have died is isolated

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Associated Press

Posted on March 11, 2011 at 4:31 PM

Updated Friday, Mar 11 at 5:34 PM

TOKYO (AP) — Authorities in northeastern Japan say they can't yet reach the area along the coast where they say 200 to 300 people were killed by today's earthquake and tsunami. They say the roads are too badly damaged.

Hundreds more are missing, and the number of injured has reached nearly 1,000.

The huge waves that roared ashore after the magnitude-8.9 quake carried away ships, cars and homes, and triggered widespread fires.

A large section of one town of 70,000 people (Kesennuma) has been burning, with no apparent hope that the fire can be extinguished.

At least two trains were swept off their tracks along the coast, but no one was hurt.

In northeastern Japan, the area around a nuclear power plant was evacuated after the reactor's cooling system failed and pressure began building inside. Officials later ordered a wider area evacuated, after radiation levels outside the plant surged.

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<<APPHOTO TOK803 (03/11/11)>>

: An area flooded by a tsunami is shown in Iwaki, Fukushima Prefecture (state) as Japan was struck by a magnitude 8.9 earthquake off its northeastern coast Friday, March 11, 2011.

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