Check out this 1979 CBS news report of the incident.
reader D writes: "Twenty-seven years ago today, America experienced its worst commercial nuclear accident - an "impossible" partial meltdown of the reactor core at the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant near Middletown, Pennsylvania. During the tension-packed week that followed, sketchy reports and conflicting information led to panic, and more than one hundred thousand residents, mostly children and pregnant women, fled the area."
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Gary Hart, who at the time was head of the Senate Subcommittee on Nuclear Regulation discusses the event on today's Democracy Now.
AMY GOODMAN: Today is the anniversary of the near meltdown. Can you talk about it?
GARY HART: Well, it was scary. I think it was -- we were a lot closer to a major nuclear catastrophe than, I think, most people realized. Im trying to reconstruct the timing of this. It seemed to me that the plant went critical on about a Thursday -- Wednesday or Thursday. I got an Army helicopter to take me and the minority member, Alan Simpson of Wyoming, to fly over the plant and be briefed up there...read on