Multimedia Presentation Alexander Biwald
March 11, 2011 - At 2:46pm, a 9.0 magnitude earthquake takes place 231 miles northeast of Tokyo, Japan, at a depth of 15.2 miles. • It is the fourth largest earthquake on record and the largest to hit Japan. • The confirmed death toll is 15,883 people. • Material damage from the earthquake and tsunami is estimated at about 25 trillion yen ($300 billion).
The tsunami caused a cooling system failure which resulted in a level 7 nuclear meltdown and release of radioactive materials. About 300 tons of radioactive water continues to leak from the plant every day into the Pacific Ocean, affecting fish and other marine life.
As high as 92% of the deaths were due to drowning in the tsunami. • 40% of the Japanese coastline is actually surrounded with high 'sea-walls' which are meant to protect them against tsunamis. The walls are as high as 5.5 meters (18ft) However, in some places the walls are only 3 meters (10ft) high, whereas the 2011 tsunami reached 7 meters (23ft) high in some areas where it struck Japan.
Failing the protection of the sea-walls, Japan has hundreds of purpose-built Tsunami Evacuation Sites. Amazingly, 101 of these evacuation sites were actually hit by the water themselves. The force of this tsunami was just that unexpected. • 2,668 people missing across Japan.
Tsunami Video • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P8qFi74k2UE • http://on.natgeo.com/SfnQpg
Tsunami Audio • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bEYGVX9d9ik