As you no doubt already know, Japan has been devastated by a monstrous natural disaster. On Thursday March 11th, at 2:46pm, Japan experienced a massive magnitude 9.0 earthquake originating just a few hundred kilometers north-east of Tokyo. The quake caused a giant tsunami which actually caused much more damage than the original earthquake. I’ve been constantly glued to the news.
An effort to summarize some key events follows…
At this time:
- Over 3000 confirmed dead, many more expected (upwards of 10,000)
- Thousands still missing
- Complete cities destroyed, thousands made homeless.
- A nuclear power plant in Fukushima was damaged from the quake. People near the plant were evacuated and fears of a meltdown are growing as the plant grows more unstable.
- Aftershocks are expected to continue for months, most recent one was magnitude 6.1.
- To provide power to the eastern part of the country, all Kanto regions have cycling blackout periods, which apparently also affects hospitals.
- Food and gas are running out and being rationed. A friend of mine, in an area largely unaffected by the quake and tsunami, says it takes 2-3 hours to get to a gas station.
- In the areas hit hardest, it has become colder and snow is expected, lowering chances for trapped survivors.
News Coverage: BBC Live. BBC has been my primary source for the above information.
Japan is special to me. Having lived there for a year, I fondly consider Japan to be a second home. I have many friends and acquaintances in Japan. Fortunately, everyone I’ve contacted, so far, is safe. I still can’t believe the destruction. My heart goes out to all of Japan….
I encourage you to leave links to images, videos, news updates, and corrections in the comments.