Monday, April 11, 2011

April 11, one month since the disaster, "trauma rages on"

  • Today marks the 1-month anniversary of the triple calamity on March 11, and one article said "The trauma rages on." ""My chest has been ripped open by the suffering and pain that this disaster has caused the people of our prefecture," said Yuhei Sato, the governor of Fukushima, which saw its coastal areas devastated by the tsunami and large segments of its population evacuated because of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant in its midst. "I have no words to express my sorrow.""
  • At 2:46pm today the 50 volunteers in the CRASH Japan headquarters stopped their work and spent time praying for the victims, and for those working to help those who have experienced loss and trauma as a result.
  • Ironically, there was another large aftershock at 5:17pm today that killed at least one person, although there was no tsunami reported. This follows an aftershock last Thursday evening, which was the largest since March 11 and killed 4 people.
  • Those killed now number over 13,000, with an additional 14,000 people missing.
  • "50 years of effort swept away." Reports continue to come in about how most preparations against tsunami were overwhelmed by the killer waves that followed the massive quake.
  • Considerable criticism has been heard about the nuclear plant's preparedness and the response after the quake. "Nuclear crisis man-made, not 'an act of god': experts".
  • Regarding the nuclear plants, workers continue to try to get a very difficult situation under control, but areas outside of the 18 mile evacuation zone are not being affected. 
  • "Desperately worried but determined to support their husbands, the wives of workers at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant struggle with their emotions as they wait for their husbands to return from work that is endangering their lives."
  • 150,000 people are still living in shelters, with 1 in 6 saying "it is unbearable."
  • The search continues for the dead, in very difficult and dangerous areas, many of them still underwater.
  • Questions are being asked about how to dispose of debris estimated at 80-200 million tons, including an estimated 146,000 cars destroyed by the tsunami in one area alone. 
  • Then there is the logistical nightmare of trying to re-unite valuables like jewelry, pictures, heirlooms and the hundreds upon hundreds of household safes that have already been found, but are without any external identification. Tens of millions of cash has already been found: "According to the police in Iwate and Miyagi prefectures, police stations receive everyday on average several hundred items containing cash."

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