Mar 12, 2011

Japan Earthquake Update

Damage caused by yesterday's massive earthquake in Japan has not been clearly established.  Rescue operation by government agencies and army has been going on but, according to media reports, quite number of people are still waiting to be rescued.  Massive Tsunami destroyed number of coastal cities in Sendai diocese.  I have not yet been able to communicate with the Diocesan office of Sendai and I am yet to know the damage of Catholic Church in Sendai diocese.  Part of Saitama diocese, especially in the coastal area has been also badly affected. 

There was a strong earthquake this morning around 4:30 am in Niigata.  According to Fr. Bassi of Kashiwazaki, Tokamachi Catholic Church's Kindergarten building was slightly damaged but there are no report of heavy damages.

Caritas Japan is starting a campaign to call for donation within Japan today.  Since the very first stage of the rescue operation needs professional skill, private organisations have limited part to play.  We may have to prepare for the second stage, especially immediately after people are secured in evacuation centers which will be, or have been, designated by local government.

It seems that the nuclear power plant in Fukushima is in critical situation.  This morning, government declared that the people within 10 km of the plant to evacuate and also ordered the electricity company to reduced the pressure within the plant, which means discharging radioactive materials into open air.

P.S. Telephone service to Japan, especially to the affected area has been limited.  Mobile phone system is functioning in the affected area but connection has been limited by the company to protect the exchange machines.

P.S. 2:  As at 10 am Japan time, according to the police report, with in 8 Prefectures and Tokyo, 287 dead has been confirmed and 725 people are reported missing.

P.S.3: As at 3 pm Japan time, according to the police report, 519 dead has been confirmed and 735 people are reported missing.

No comments:

Post a Comment