It’s hard to believe it was four years ago that a 9.0 magnitude earthquake struck off the east coast of Japan, triggering a tsunami that literally wiped entire towns off the map. We’ve all seen the videos that were captured on that day.
Less than an hour after the earthquake, the first of many tsunami waves hit Japan’s coastline. The waves reached heights (how far the wave surges inland above sea level) of up to 128 feet (39 meters) at Miyako city and traveled inland as far as 6 miles (10 km) in Sendai. 18,000 people died and thousands are still missing.
Today, at 2.46pm local time in Japan – the moment the earthquake struck underwater near the eastern Miyagi prefecture in 2011- tsunami warning alarms rang out. A national minute’s silence followed.
Even in a society as advanced as Japan’s, much is left to be done. Many towns were still unable to offer permanent housing or jobs to their residents, some areas in the radius of the Fukushima nuclear meltdown are still off limits, and many children have been orphaned by the natural disaster.
It’s important that we remember the victims of these natural disasters across the world.