Austria’s Federal Ministry for Science and Research has released an animated map showing radioactive material from the disaster in Japan moving across the Pacific Ocean toward California.
Note: At more than 7 MB, this GIF can take a while to load if you’re on a slow connection.
California Department of Public Health officials have opened a phone hotline to address concerns about local radiation exposure in the aftermath of the nuclear power plant crisis in Japan. The number is (916) 341-3947. The Times’ interactive map shows the likelihood of fallout radiation in Hawaii and Los Angeles.
Japan has been rocked by hundreds of aftershocks since a massive magnitude 9.0 earthquake struck on March 11 at 2:46 p.m. Japan local time.
This map shows all aftershocks above magnitude 5.0, and you can also see a series of “smaller” quakes — the first was a 7.2 — starting several days earlier.
A buildup of hydrogen gas causes another explosion, destroying the outer shell of a reactor at the quake-damaged Fukushima No. 1 plant. The blast comes after the pumping of seawater stalled, exposing the fuel rods to air and increasing the risk of radiation being released. Death toll continues to rise as 2,000 bodies are found in a single province.
International rescue teams pour in
Official deaths: 1,886
Official missing: 2,369
Unofficial counts: 2,000 bodies found, 10,000 estimated deaths, in Miyagi
Households without water: 1.4 million
Households without power: 1.9 million
Japan’s economy stumbling in wake of disaster
Nikkei stock average: -6.2%
Topix index: -7.5%
Tokyo forgoes its trademark blaze of neon
Devastation has little effect on culture’s impeccable manners
Japan’s crisis may have already derailed ‘nuclear renaissance’
Health officials face a crisis of trauma injuries and waterborne disease
Japanese American groups in L.A. use Web to respond to quake
Photo: Because roads are cut off or buried, evacuees are traveling by foot. These people walk on a railway track of Japan Railway’s Ofunato Line. Credit: Associated Press
A 3900-word piece from March 14, 1993:
In hopes of becoming energy independent, Japan has set a goal of constructing 40 new reactors during the next 20 years, more than doubling its capacity to use nuclear power to generate electricity. That would push Japan past France and the former Soviet Union to make it second only to the United States in nuclear-power generation.
But the battle speaks to more than nuclear power. The way the Japanese government, in concert with industry, has used money, jobs and propaganda to overcome opposition and turn Shimokita peninsula into a key element of its nuclear strategy is a telling example of how a country’s leadership can push through policies it has determined to be in the nation’s best interests, even if those policies are unpopular.
Google has released before and after images of Japan. Follow them on Twitter for more.
Photo: Satellite view of Kamaishi before and after the 8.9 magnitude earthquake and tsunami. Credit: Google and GeoEye.
No mobile phones: People line up to use public telephone booths at Shibuya station in Tokyo.
Credit: Yomiuri / Reuters
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Video: Home video of the earthquake and its aftermath. Credit: kirakirayuji / CitizenTube