Earthquake and Tsunami Overpower Japan (Open Thread)

By Bridgette

Japan was Attacked by an Earthquake and Tsunami AP

Japan was swallowed by water in the resulting tsunami after being hit by the one of the largest earthquakes ever recorded in over 140 years.  The quake was measured at 8.9 by the U.S. Geological Service.   One town, Karihara, Japan was reported to be totally destroyed a couple hours after the reports began.  There were over 19 aftershocks in Japan and it is not over yet.  Waves were over 23 feet high.

Tsunami watches and warnings began during the night for the entire Pacific Basin.   Hawaii was first to have their Tsunami Watch turn into a Warning around 4 a.m. CST.   A half hour later, the entire West Coast was upgraded to a Warning.   Reporters were saying that waves could be about 9 feet high when they hit Hawaii.  The same energy flow was then headed in a diagonal direction toward California, Oregon, Alaska and Washington.  Early reporting had the tsunami hitting the San Francisco area at 7:30 a.m PST.  Later on the time was moved to 8:28 a.m.

Watching the tsunami overtake the beaches, highways, homes, land, waterways,  was incredible.  The force of the water picked up huge ships, vessels, cars, homes and transported them across miles.  Anything in the  way of this force was destroyed.     The devastation won’t be known for days or weeks, but the deadly waves have shown the true force of Mother Nature.

The West Coast is hunkered down awaiting the arrival of the tsunami and the resulting waves.

We pray for the people of  Japan and  for those living in Hawaii and our own West Coast States.

Source: NOAA - USA Today

160 responses to “Earthquake and Tsunami Overpower Japan (Open Thread)


    Prime Minister Naoto Kan said Japan’s nuclear crisis remained “very grave” as forecasts indicated changing winds could start moving radiation closer to Tokyo by the end of the weekend.

    Tokyo Electric Power Co. said it may finish reconnecting a power line to the No. 1 and No. 2 reactors by tomorrow morning. The electrical link would be used to restart pumps needed to protect fuel rods from overheating. However, it’s possible the water pumps, damaged in the tsunami, might not work even with power, a Tepco official said.

    “We must avoid being overly optimistic,” Philippe Jamet, a commissioner at the Autorite de Surete Nucleaire, France’s nuclear regulator, said at a briefing in Paris today. “This will likely take human intervention like going into control rooms to reconnect valves.”


    Radiation hampers efforts to restore power to nuclear plant in Japan

    Efforts to try to restore power to reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi complex are interrupted as high radiation forces the withdrawal of workers. But it’s unclear whether a return of power will help. Spent fuel rods remain the biggest concern.

  3. This is a potential threat to upstate New York.

    As a result of what appears to be a pump seal failure, tens of thousands of litres of radioactive water escaped the generating station on Monday and ended up in Lake Ontario. This is concerning for a number of reasons, but it is especially concerning considering the fact that Lake Ontario is the main source of drinking water for millions of people.


    The boss of the company behind the devastated Japanese nuclear reactor today broke down in tears – as his country finally acknowledged the radiation spewing from the over-heating reactors and fuel rods was enough to kill some citizens.

    • For sure anyone working on the plant is overwhelmed. We are and we aren’t there. They have done their best and put themselves into a perilous situation trying to fix what was broken. There are 50 people that have worked day in and day out at that plant.

      I can’t imagine the pressure these people have been under and this is only one of the problems that the country has faced. It has been heartbreaking to watch and hear about.

      They just raised the it to a Level 5 Nuclear Emergency out of 7. Conditions at the plant are grave. They just showed a picture of the man breaking down in front of the cameras. Their culture places great shame on people who can’t solve a problem or are responsible. These people were hit with an 9.2 earthquake and tsunami ..this was an act of nature. There should be no shame. No need to place blame. Just save them.

      I see the pictures and wonder where do they even start to clean up.


    The elderly are being abandoned to die in Japanese hospitals and care homes devastated by the tsunami amid a worsening humanitarian and nuclear disaster.

    Hundreds of thousands of victims have been made homeless, with more than 400,000 struggling to survive in emergency shelters with no power and little food or water.

    • The news doesn’t get better. It appears survival instincts and save yourself mentality is kicking in. I thought food and water were being shipped and dropped into the hard hit areas. It appears those elderly people were in a facility close to the plant.

      From that article
      * 128 pensioners deserted by medical staff at a hospital inside exclusion zone
      * Japan holds minute’s silence to mark one week since earthquake and tsunami
      * Official death toll hits 6,539 but expected to climb far higher
      * Hundreds of thousands made homeless seek refuge in emergency shelters
      * But there is no heating amid freezing temperatures and food and water are running low.

      • The good news is that the Government and TEPCO have finally admitted that they have to bury the reactors in concrete as was done at Chenobyl. So hopefully they can contain the radiation before more of it spreads to Tokyo and Los Angeles.

        The really scary prospect is that plutonium which is millions of times more deadly than uranian will get into the atmosphere in strong concentrations. No telling how many people will die if that happens.

        • It is my understanding that Plan A is trying to get electricity to the plant so they can cool down the reactors. Burying the plant is supposed to be plan B, if A doesn’t work this weekend.

          I wonder if it is business as usual in Tokyo and other parts of the country. I heard that Sony and Toyota won’t be shipping product to the US. That in turn is affecting a GM plant in Louisiana and it might have to close. Why don’t we start new plants and produce the parts that we get from other countries? It could be up and running probably by the time the Japanese are able to be operative again. There are certainly enough unemployed GM workers available to do the work.

          I can’t imagine the internal panic of the people living under the conditions they have endured. I am sure the government is trying to keep the public calm. No doubt even those in the government are overwhelmed and have suffered shock. They are suffering and in fear for themselves and their whole country. I believe they are doing the best they can.

          • Bridgette | March 18, 2011 at 5:16 pm |

            “I heard that Sony and Toyota won’t be shipping product to the US. That in turn is affecting a GM plant in Louisiana and it might have to close. Why don’t we start new plants and produce the parts that we get from other countries?”

            Because BO is too busy signing contracts for Brazile to drill for our Oil in the Gulf of Mexico, signing contracts for Tokyo Electric to build and operate nukes in the US, shutting down the Oil, Gas and Coal industries in the US, selling our auto and military tank manufacturing to companies controlled by musbro terrorists, and destroying what little there is left of our manufacturing base in the US.

      • Do you think that in Japan the medical staff are Japanese? Or are their hospitals as full of Middle Easterners and Pakistanis as ours? What sort of medical person deserts elderly people like that?


    Japan cites radiation in milk, spinach near plant

    FUKUSHIMA, Japan – In the first sign that contamination from Japan’s stricken nuclear complex had seeped into the food chain, officials said Saturday that radiation levels in spinach and milk from farms near the tsunami-crippled facility exceeded government safety limits.


    Traces of radioactive iodine found in tap water in Tokyo, other areas

  8. Japan’s Efforts to Ease Nuclear Crisis Hit Setback as Reactors Face Unexpected Rise in Pressure
    March 20, 2011 Snips

    Growing concerns about radiation add to the overwhelming chain of disasters Japan has struggled with since the 9.0-magnitude quake. The quake spawned a tsunami that ravaged the northeastern coast, killing more than 8,100 people, leaving 12,000 people missing, and displacing another 452,000, who are living in shelters.

    Fuel, food and water remain scarce. The government in recent days acknowledged being caught ill-prepared by an enormous disaster that the prime minister has called the worst crisis since World War II.

    Bodies are piling up in some of devastated communities and badly decomposing even amid chilly rain and snow. “The recent bodies — we can’t show them to the families. The faces have been purple, which means they are starting to decompose,” says Shuji Horaguchi, a disaster relief official setting up a center to process bodies in Natori, on the outskirts of Sendai. “Some we’re finding now have been in the water for a long time, they’re not in good shape. Crabs and fish have eaten parts.”

  9. Breaking News…

    Unbelievable… another earthquake hits Japan. An early report says it is a 6.7 on the scale and has occurred north of where the original earthquake hit in March or April. They are also warning of a tsumani.

    Prayers are needed for the people of Japan. Heartbreaking information.

  10. Amazing come back for Japan

    What a comeback! Eleven months after the tsunami ravaged Japan, a series of pictures reveals the incredible progress being made to clear up the devastation
    By David Baker
    Last updated at 7:29 PM on 11th February 2012

    When Japan was hit by both an earthquake and tsunami in quick succession in March last year, the images of devastation gripped the world.

    And now after 11 months of tireless rebuilding, these pictures reveal the amazing progress made since those tragic events.

    Photographers returned to the scenes of desolation to take these stunning shots that capture the way in which the areas most severely affected have changed.

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