After March 11th, 2011, the world has not been the same – and may not be for months. The entire nation of Japan was struck by an earthquake of epic proportions at 2:46 p.m. local time on the grim Friday. Tragically, it was not just the five minutes of sustained dreadful shaking that caused the gravest losses, but the resulting tsunami that soon followed. The magnitude 9.0 earthquake was the strongest earthquake in the history of Japan, and was followed by colossal aftershocks in the dozens. Historically, it ranks as the fifth largest earthquake in the world. Approximately 7,000 people are confirmed dead after the first week of international recovery efforts, and over 10,000 more are still missing. Over half a million people are displaced, leaving them on the streets in freezing temperatures. Japan’s tough building code served its purpose well by preventing many buildings from complete destruction. However, the resulting tsunami was less merciful. The wall of water reached heights of 33 feet, roaring through anything that got in its way.
The devastation was horrific to say the least, and its effects will be affecting us personally. The damage caused to a Japanese nuclear plant near the epicenter has resulted in a radiation fallout that is not only threatening Japan’s food supply, but also spreading across the world and onto our shores. Furthermore, this catastrophic event will impact the global economy on a scale that will shake our wallets with a magnitude of its own. A new TV will now cost more since the plant it’s being made in has shutdown, and as for the global auto industry, desirable cars will become a harder-to-find commodity due to resulting parts shortages, also halting production.
Ways to help Japan are easily accessible. For example, texting REDCROSS to 90999 can help you donate $10. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected.