, This megathrust earthquake was a recurrence of the mechanism of the earlier 869 Sanriku earthquake, which has been estimated as having a magnitude of at least 8.4 Mw, which also created a large tsunami that inundated the Sendai plain.  TEPCO, which normally provides approximately 40 GW of electricity, announced that it could only provide about 30 GW, because 40% of the electricity used in the greater Tokyo area was supplied by reactors in the Niigata and Fukushima prefectures. Sendai was the nearest major city to the earthquake, 130 km (81 mi) from the epicenter; the earthquake occurred 373 km (232 mi) northeast of Tokyo. It was preceded by several foreshocks, including a magnitude-7.2 event centred approximately 25 miles (40 km) away from the epicentre of the main quake. An international team of geologists has established the cause of the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan's Tohoku region in March 2011 and killed over 15,000 people. Furthermore, shortly after the earthquake, some wave meters reported a fluctuation of "20 centimetres (7.9 in)", and this value was broadcast throughout the mass media and the warning system, which caused some residents to underestimate the danger of their situation and even delayed or suspended their evacuation. Kyodo News, "Survivors in trauma after life-changing nightmare day". JAPAN TSUNAMI: HOW IT HAPPENED On July 16th at 12:00am, July 15th at 11:00pm BKK/JKT ; National Geographic Channel; HOME; ABOUT; VIDEOS; PHOTOS; LOCATION; INTERACT. Watts, Jonathan, "Quake survivors search for hope and shelter". The committee advised that future policy should be to protect against the highest possible tsunami. Also, a tsunami-earthquake with a tsunami magnitude scales (Mt) between 8.6 and 9.0 (Similar to the 1896 Sanriku earthquake, the Mt for the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake was 9.1–9.4) had a 30% chance to occur within 30 years. Stone monuments at the UNESCO World Heritage Site: Shrines and Temples of Nikkō were toppled.  As the nuclear crisis entered a second month, experts said that Fukushima Daiichi, while not the worst nuclear accident ever, was the most complicated.  Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan said, "In the 65 years after the end of World War II, this is the toughest and the most difficult crisis for Japan.  Over eight hundred aftershocks of magnitude 4.5 Mw or greater have occurred since the initial quake, including one on 26 October 2013 (local time) of magnitude 7.1 Mw. On 11 March, 2011, a megathrust earthquake struck off the coast of Japan. , As of 27 May 2011, three Japan Ground Self-Defense Force members had died while conducting relief operations in Tōhoku.  Four trains on coastal lines were reported as being out of contact with operators; one, a four-car train on the Senseki Line, was found to have derailed, and its occupants were rescued shortly after 8 am the next morning. Another cause of delayed evacuations was the release of the second update on the tsunami warning long after the earthquake (28 minutes, according to observations); by that time, power failures and similar circumstances reportedly prevented the update from reaching some residents. It was measured at 8.4 on the JMA seismic intensity scale The earthquake happened 130 kilometres (81 mi) off Sendai, Miyagi Prefecture, on the east coast of the Tōhoku of Japan, on March 11, 2011 at 05:46:23 UTC.It was at a depth of 24.4 km (15.2 miles).  The speed of the Earth's rotation increased, shortening the day by 1.8 microseconds due to the redistribution of Earth's mass. There was a tsunami in the Indian Ocean in 2004, which killed at least 230,000 people, but it did not affect Japan. , For the purpose of relief fund distribution, an "earthquake-related death" is defined as a case where the earthquake did not directly kill a person, but acted as a contributory factor that indirectly caused their death. Lv 4. The tsunami resulted in over 340,000 displaced people in the Tōhoku region, and shortages of food, water, shelter, medicine, and fuel for survivors. The waves were expected to come ashore over a period of several hours, with the highest and most powerful expected at 0930 (1730 GMT), Geophysicist Gerard Fryer at the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Honolulu said high water reached Port Orford at 0730 (1530 … The Japanese government's response to the earthquake, the efforts of Japanese citizens to help with recovery, and the disaster itself have inspired many works from Japanese creators. Entire towns were destroyed in tsunami-hit areas in Japan, including 9,500 missing in Minamisanriku; one thousand bodies had been recovered in the town by 14 March 2011. Cabinet Office Disaster Management, Government of Japan (2015). , Four days later on 11 April, another magnitude 7.1 Mw aftershock struck Fukushima, causing additional damage and killing a total of three people. , Shortly after the earthquake, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (PTWC) in Hawaii issued tsunami watches and announcements for locations in the Pacific. 3. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. If harnessed, the seismic energy from this earthquake would power a city the size of Los Angeles for an entire year. In the fall of 2016 Japan's National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Resilience (NIED; Japanese abbreviation, Bosai Kaken; full name Bousai Kagaku Gijutsu Kenkyusho) launched the online interactive "Disaster Chronology Map for Japan, 416–2013" (map labels in Japanese) to display in visual form the location, disaster time, and date across the islands. The strong ground motion registered at the maximum of 7 on the Japan Meteorological Agency seismic intensity scale in Kurihara, Miyagi Prefecture. , Japan's transport network suffered severe disruptions. This is an alphabetically sorted list of cities and towns severely damaged by the 2011 … Japan Earthquake and Tsunami 2011 (Direct Relief photo) Immediately following the disaster, Direct Relief and the Japanese American Citizens League established the Japan Relief and Recovery Fund, committing 100 percent of all contributions to be used exclusively to help people in Japan in the most productive, efficient manner possible. Japan's monster quake: Do scientists have key to decode future tremblors?  The quake and tsunami killed 378 elementary, middle-school, and high school students and left 158 others missing.  Two substations, one in Shizuoka Prefecture and one in Nagano Prefecture, were able to convert between frequencies and transfer electricity from Kansai to Kanto and Tōhoku, but their capacity was limited to 1 GW. , The tsunami was reported to have caused several deaths outside Japan. ", Liquefaction driving away Chiba residents, Tokyo Disneyland's parking lot shows the risk of reclaimed land, "Japan Earthquake May Have Shifted Earth's Axis", "Magnitude 7.1 – NEAR THE EAST COAST OF HONSHU, JAPAN", "Fresh quake triggers tsunami warning in Japan", "Four dead as new tremor hits Japan disaster zone", "At least 6 killed in new Japan earthquake", "USGS 10-degree Map Centered at 35°N,140°E of earthquakes of magnitude 4.5 or over", "Aftershocks Associated With Impaired Health Caused by the Great East Japan Disaster Among Youth Across Japan: A National Cross-Sectional Survey Interact J Med Res 2013;2(2):e31", "Alert sounded a minute before the tremor struck", 経験則からのずれ ―はじめの数秒と強震動：τc, Pd，スペクトル，簡易震源域推定方法―, "Earthquake Early Warning and Tsunami Warning of JMA for the 2011 off the Pacific Coast of Tohoku Earthquake", "Tsunami warnings issued for at least 20 countries after quake", "Distance between Dichato, Chile and Sendai, Japan is 17228km", "Chile Lifts Tsunami Alerts After Japan Quake Spawns Waves", "Chilean site: (Tsunami) waves penetrated 70–100 m in different parts of the country", "Tsunami Information (Estimated Tsunami arrival time and Height)", Helmholtz Research Centre for Geosciences, Japan's tsunami victims only had 15 minutes warning, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Japan tsunami: Toll could rise to more than 1,300, "News: Tsunami rolls through Pacific, Sendai Airport under water, Tokyo Narita closed, Pacific region airports endangered", "10-meter tsunami observed in area near Sendai in Miyagi Pref", "Japan 8.9-magnitude earthquake sparks massive tsunami", "Earthquake, tsunami wreak havoc in Japan", Tsunami hit more than 100 designated evacuation sites, "9,500 unaccounted for in Miyagi's Minamisanriku: local gov't", "東北地方太平洋沖地震を教訓とした地震・津波対策に関する専門調査会中間とりまとめ", U.S. rescue teams find devastation in northern city of Ofunato, "Whole towns gone-no cars or people seen", "Honderden doden in Japanse kuststad (Hundreds dead in Japanese coastal town)" (in Dutch), "Japan army says 300–400 bodies found in Rikuzentakata: Report", Miyagi coastal whaling port pulverized, little more than memory, 'Nothing can prepare you to witness this', Tsunami Slams Japan After Record Earthquake, Killing Hundreds, "Japan disaster: 30 powerful images of the earthquake and tsunami", Survivors on cut-off isle were ready for disaster, Tsunami Information NUMBER 64 (Tsunami Observation), "Tsunami Information NUMBER 64(Tsunami Observations)", "Executive Summary of Urgent Field Survey of Earthquake and Tsunami Disasters by the 2011 off the Pacific coast of Tōhoku Earthquake", "Researchers: 30-meter tsunami in Ofunato", "38-meter-high tsunami triggered by 11 March quake: survey", Earthquake Research Institute, University of Tokyo, "東北地方太平洋沖地震による津波被害を踏まえた津波警報の改善の方向性について（最終とりまとめ）", "Evacuate all coastal areas immediately, Hawaii Civil Defense says", "Text of PTWC Pacific-wide tsunami warning", "Tsunami from Japanese quake prompts evacuation of 11,000 residents on Russia's Pacific islands", "Tsunami Warning and Advisory No. Victims aged 60 or older accounted for 65.2% of the deaths, with 24% of total victims being in their 70s.  The axial shift was caused by the redistribution of mass on the Earth's surface, which changed the planet's moment of inertia. A tsunami—Japanese for “harbor wave”—is a series of powerful waves caused by the displacement of a large body of water.  Gravimetric data from the quake have been used to create a model for increased warning time compared to seismic models, as gravity fields travel faster than seismic waves. It could take months or years to learn how damaging the release of dangerous isotopes has been to human health and food supplies, and to the surrounding countryside.  Television broadcasts of the press conferences of Prime Minister Naoto Kan and Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano included simultaneous JSL interpreters standing next to the Japanese flag on the same platform. The plant's 14-metre-high (46 ft) seawall successfully withstood the tsunami. The epicentre was located some 80 miles (130 km) east of the city of Sendai, Miyagi prefecture, and the focus occurred at a depth of 18.6 miles (about 30 km) below the floor of the western Pacific Ocean.  Many electrical generators ran out of fuel. View in classroom This lesson will look at the causes and impacts of the Japanese 2011 earthquake and tsunami.  Just over an hour after the earthquake at 15:55 JST, a tsunami was observed flooding Sendai Airport, which is located near the coast of Miyagi Prefecture, with waves sweeping away cars and planes and flooding various buildings as they traveled inland. JACL, which was founded in 1929, is the oldest and largest … When it hit, it created waves more than 10 metres high. In 2001 it was reckoned that there was a high likelihood of a large tsunami hitting the Sendai plain as more than 1,100 years had then elapsed. , The Geospatial Information Authority of Japan reported land subsidence based on the height of triangulation stations in the area measured by GPS as compared to their previous values from 14 April 2011. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article.  Wakabayashi Ward in Sendai was also particularly hard hit. , In April 2015, authorities off the coast of Oregon discovered debris that is thought to be from a boat destroyed during the tsunami. The largest fault slip ever recorded caused the tsunami that hit Japan. , It was noted that the Japanese news media has been at times overly cautious to avoid panic and reliance on confusing statements by experts and officials. in Japanese studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The volcano had previously erupted in January 2011; it is not known if the later eruption was linked to the earthquake.  At least 101 designated tsunami evacuation sites were hit by the wave. It generated waves 11 to 12 feet (3.3 to 3.6 metres) high along the coasts of Kauai and Hawaii in the Hawaiian Islands chain and 5-foot (1.5-metre) waves along the island of Shemya in the Aleutian Islands chain. The quake caused a giant wave out at sea, called a tsunami, which grew to 10 metres high. The economic impact included both immediate problems, with industrial production suspended in many factories, and the longer term issue of the cost of rebuilding which has been estimated at ¥10 trillion ($122 billion). Most tsunamis, like the one that formed off Tohoku, are triggered by underwater tectonic activity , such as earthquakes and volcanic eruption s.  The most severe effects of the tsunami were felt along a 670-kilometre-long (420 mi) stretch of coastline from Erimo, Hokkaido, in the north to Ōarai, Ibaraki, in the south, with most of the destruction in that area occurring in the hour following the earthquake.  The Headquarters For Earthquake Research Promotion set up by Japanese government then reassessed the long term risk of trench-type earthquakes around Japan, and it was announced in November 2011 that research on the 869 Sanriku earthquake indicated that a similar earthquake with a magnitude of Mw 8.4–9.0 would take place off the Pacific coast of northeastern Japan, on average, every 600 years. It was the most powerful earthquake to hit …  The Japanese government continued to ask the public to conserve electricity until 2016, when it is predicted that the supply will be sufficient to meet demand, thanks to the deepening of the mindset to conserve electricity among corporate and general public, addition of new electricity providers due to the electricity liberalization policy, increased output from renewable energy as well as fossil fuel power stations, as well as sharing of electricity between different electricity companies. When the roads clear, experts will be dispatched to conduct further investigations. Of these, only nine reactors in five power plants were operating after having been restarted post-2011. Answer Save. The 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami has been assigned GLIDE identifier EQ-2011-000028-JPN by the Asian Disaster Reduction Center. These include Sendai #4, New-Sendai #1 and #2, Haranomachi #1 and #2, Hirono #2 and #4 and Hitachinaka #1. The earthquake happened just off the coast, in the water near the city of Sendai. Two days of seismic activity made available by the IRIS Consortium were compressed into two minutes of sound. , In Japan, the National Police Agency has confirmed 15,899 deaths, 6,157 injured, and 2,529 people missing across twenty prefectures. The March 11 temblor was felt as far away as Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia; Kao-hsiung, Taiwan; and Beijing, China. Subsequent analysis found that many Japanese nuclear plants, including Fukushima Daiichi, were not adequately protected against tsunamis.  On 11 July 2016, the USGS further upgraded the earthquake to 9.1.  The system's software was subsequently modified to handle this kind of situation. Its epicenter was 130 kilometers off Sendai, Honshu; it occurred at a relatively shallow depth of 32 kilometers. , On 7 December 2012 a large aftershock of magnitude 7.3 Mw caused a minor tsunami, and again on 26 October 2013 a small tsunami was recorded after a 7.1 Mw aftershock. Japan earthquake and tsunami of 2011 - Japan earthquake and tsunami of 2011 - Relief and rebuilding efforts: In the first hours after the earthquake, Japanese Prime Minister Kan Naoto moved to set up an emergency command centre in Tokyo, and a large number of rescue workers and some 100,000 members of the Japanese Self-Defense Force were rapidly mobilized to deal with the crisis. All damaged dams are functioning with no problems. Director Hideaki Anno's 2016 film Shin Godzilla portrays the titular kaiju as a representation of disasters such as the Tōhoku earthquake and the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, and criticizes the Japanese government's response to such disasters.  Internet services were largely unaffected in areas where basic infrastructure remained, despite the earthquake having damaged portions of several undersea cable systems landing in the affected regions; these systems were able to reroute around affected segments onto redundant links. ABOUT THE SHOW.  In 2007, the probability of an earthquake with a magnitude of Mw 8.1–8.3 was estimated as 99% within the following 30 years..  Minami-Kesennuma Station on the Kesennuma Line was obliterated save for its platform; 62 of 70 (31 of 35) JR East train lines suffered damage to some degree; in the worst-hit areas, 23 stations on 7 lines were washed away, with damage or loss of track in 680 locations and the 30-km radius around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant unable to be assessed. KGW estimates that more than 1 million tons of debris still remain in the Pacific Ocean. It was not as bad as the Chernobyl disaster, but worse than the Three Mile Island accident. As a result, the communities in question are now more susceptible to flooding during high tides. JACL, which was founded in 1929, is the oldest and largest … MORE. , The number 2 reactor at Tōkai Nuclear Power Plant was shut down automatically. On 11 March, 2011, a megathrust earthquake struck off the coast of Japan. Because tsunami walls had been overtopped, the committee also suggested, besides building taller tsunami walls, also teaching citizens how to evacuate if a large-scale tsunami should strike. A magnitude-9.0 earthquake struck off Japan’s northeastern coast. According to some reports, one wave penetrated some 6 miles (10 km) inland after causing the Natori River, which separates Sendai from the city of Natori to the south, to overflow. In … Please select which sections you would like to print: Corrections?  It was extinguished after ten days, injuring six people, and destroying storage tanks. , The earthquake moved Honshu (the main island of Japan) 2.4 m (8 ft) east, shifted the Earth on its axis by estimates of between 10 cm (4 in) and 25 cm (10 in), increased earth's rotational speed by 1.8 µs per day, and generated infrasound waves detected in perturbations of the low-orbiting Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer satellite. , According to Japan's foreign ministry, 116 countries and 28 international organizations offered assistance. "Spatial distribution and focal mechanisms of aftershocks of the 2011 off the Pacific coast of Tōhoku Earthquake" by Y. Asano, T. Saito, Y. Ito, K. Shiomi, H. Hirose, T. Matsumoto, S. Aoi, S. Hori, and S. Sekiguchi. The break caused the sea floor to rise by several metres. A tsunami (pronounced “soo-nom-ee”) is a “giant sea wave caused by an earthquake or volcano.” As you know, Japan is an island. Several hours later 9-foot (2.7-metre) tsunami waves struck the coasts of California and Oregon in North America.  Within Japan, only a few websites were initially unreachable. It was later reported that a satellite orbiting at the outer edge of Earth’s atmosphere that day had detected infrasonics (very low-frequency sound waves) from the quake. A ship washed ashore during the 2011 Japan tsunami lies amidst wreckage in Kesennuma, Miyagi, Japan.  Peru reported a wave of 1.5 m (4 ft 11 in) and more than 300 homes damaged. Tragically, on March 11, they did. "What Have Religious Groups Done After 3.11?  Also, at the slope of a nearby mountain from 400 metres (1,300 ft) away at Aneyoshi fishery port (姉吉漁港) of Omoe peninsula (重茂半島) in Miyako, Iwate, Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology found estimated tsunami run up height of 38.9 metres (128 ft).  Food products were also found contaminated by radioactive matter in several places in Japan.  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