The Great East Japan Earthquake

Today marks the 4th anniversary of the March 11th,  2011 Tōhoku earthquake.  On this day in 2011 the strongest recorded earthquake to ever hit Japan struck off the coast near Sendai, Japan.

All over Japan people will honor those who died in the earthquake and subsequent tsunami.  Today at 2:46 PM  local time we will all pause for prayer or reflection on the losses suffered on that day 4 years ago.  It makes me very sad to think of the deaths and injuries that happened that March afternoon.  More than 18,000 people were killed or are still missing as a result of this disaster. 

Japan also suffered severe damage at the  Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant and this is still years away from being stabilized. My city in Japan has taken in more than 60,000 people who can’t return home due to the nuclear disaster.  Radiation in some areas near the reactors is too high for people to safely live or even travel to. 

I am thankful that the mountains between my city and the coast are an effective barrier to the radiation and our part of the Tohuku region was spared the bulk of the radiation. We have only low background levels of radiation where I live.

Please join me in wishing the best for those families who suffered so much from this disaster.  We can be thankful that our families are safe.

This clock was broken and forever marks the time when the shock waves shook my workplace until many things were thrown around the building. This time is two minutes after the earthquake occurred in the Pacific Ocean and reflects the most violent part of the shock waves in Aizu Wakamatsu, Japan.

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  • Would you believe, sir, that I was about to ask you if it were safe to live in Fukushima?! Earthquake itself was a great tragedy but tsunami and nuclear plant explosion made it even worse. World's history is full of such tragedies and we know that they'll continue to happen in the future as well for such is the law of of nature but still I wish no such calamity hit our planet again.

    I wish all those, who suffered, best of luck. What I know about Japanese is that they probably are the hardest working people in the world. I wish them patience and strength.

  • My condolences to all victims' relatives of that awful tragedy.

  • Nature's blows can be really hard. I wish all those peple strength and will to overcome the concequences of the disaster.

  • I still remember that distressed images. i don't think any person could get used to this.
    God bless them all and encourage this hardworking village.
  • Let's pray for the victims and the families!

    Unfortunately, Japan has seen so many earthquakes - it's said people who live in Japan are accustomed to quakes. I take my hat off to you, too - quakes and radiation can be so scary and you could have chosen another country instead of Japan to live and teach. 

    Take care!

  • Just last night I watched a documentary film about this event. It's so sad but at the same time I really admire Japanese's spirit to overcome such severe disaster.

  • Thank you Ina and Onee-chan. I'm sure they would be grateful for your best wishes. 

    This was the first 9.0 earthquake that scientists think has hit Japan during recorded history. There are often smaller earthquakes here. I never felt one in my life until I moved to Japan in 2013.Now it isn't exciting when one happens.

    I am lucky I wasn't here during the 3/11 quake because the ceiling and duct-work in my classroom came crashing down and anyone inside could have been badly hurt. Now the building has been improved to try to avoid any future earthquake damage.

  • I wish the best for those families. And wish there's no big disaster again for Japan, and all over the world.

  • It's sad for those villagers that had been displaced due to the radiation. They loss their ancestral homes and livelihood. May they find happiness in new homes.

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