The 2001 Tohoku Earthquake & Tsunami The most powerful earthquake ever recorded to have hit Japan A 9.0 magnitude Japan moved 2.4 meters closer to North America This of course triggered a massive tsunami that wrecked the north eastern coastline Japan was simply not as prepared as they thought they were for such a disaster If that wasn’t bad enough, there was a Level 7 nuclear emergency at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant comparable to Chernobyl But I’ll specifically cover that in a separate video coming soon so… make sure to subscribe to get that In this video it’s the earthquake and tsunami and here’s 10 things you didn’t know about it! From analysing the Holocene sequence in the Sendai area it’s known that sometime between 1000 BC and 500 BC a massive tsunami-generating earthquake hit the area Then in 1 AD, it hit again Over 800 years later, The Sanriku Earthquake & Tsunami of 869 devastated the same area in and around Sendai That’s three events of similar type and magnitude in the same region all in the last 3000 years This indicates a recurrence interval of 800 to 1100 years We were due another one And on March 11th, 2011, this prediction was fulfilled in truly devastating fashion Let’s just hope everyone’s more prepared by the time the fifth one hits in about 800 to 1100 years time The effects of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan were so great even Antarctica was affected Seismic waves increased the flow of the Whillans Ice Stream which is essentially a moving ice river And sea waves having travelled 13,000 km or 8,100 miles broke icebergs, the size of Manhattan off the Sulzberger Ice Shelf So Japan moved 2.4 meters closer to North America and Antarctica was affected But let’s go one step further because the entire planet itself was altered The Earth’s axis shifted by 10 to 25 cm which changed the tilt of the planet and the length of a day The redistribution of Earth’s mass shortened our day by almost 2 microseconds The earthquake and tsunami caused immense destruction So much so that financially, it’s the costliest natural disaster of all time Let’s do some comparisons After a natural disaster, regardless of where it happened in the world there is almost always chaos, unruliness and looting but in Japan immediately following the earthquake there was a notable lack of disorder People remained calm despite having every right to freak out They formed orderly lines outside supermarkets even though they were desperate for food This act of civility is due to what the Japanese call ‘Gaman’ What is Gaman? Gaman means to do ones best ‘s times of distress To maintain self-control and discipline There is a national desire to see civility prevail no matter the circumstances even when one catastrophe piles onto another The value of the group over the value of the individual A collectivist society When the disaster hit, obviously the police did their part to maintain the peace and the Gaman attitude of people was surely beneficial but there was another reason for the lack of chaos Surprisingly, members of the Yakuza Japan’s organised crime syndicate helped enforce order on the streets All three major yakuza crime groups compiled squads to patrol their turf to make sure looting and robbery did not occur One yakuza group supposedly shipped over 40 tons of humanitarian aid supplies nationwide Another group opened its Tokyo offices to displaced individuals, Japanese and foreigners alike after the public transportation systems failed One yakuza bossed quoted: 128 countries offered assisted to Japan in their time of need The global humanitarian response was admirable One country, though, in particular, surprised a lot of people North Korea donated $100,000 USD to the Japanese Red Cross Society and the late former leader, Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Il himself, sent half a millions dollars to Korean residents in Japan caught up in the disaster This might not seem like a large amount compared to the aid from some other countries, but What the hell? It’s North Korea we’re talking about! All around the world, many celebrities privately donated large amounts to the relief effort including Hikaru Utada Gackt AKB48 Girls’ Generation Jackie Chan Clint Eastwood Sandra Bullock Gwen Stefani Shakira Black Eyed Peas My Chemical Romance and Lady Gaga It’s been nearly 5 years since the Tohoku Earthquake & Tsunami hit About 16,000 people died in the tragedy with 2,500 people still listed as missing Understandably, survivors are still finding it hard to cope and are struggling to make sense of it to this very day Police have received hundreds of reports from people who have apparently seen ghosts in tsunami-devastated towns They see apparitions where housing units used to be and long phantom queues forming outside former shopping malls Taxi drivers, in particular, have reported picking up… ghost passengers A taxi driver recalls a woman getting into his taxi at Ishinomaki Train station a month after the earthquake She gets into the backseat and asks for him to take her to a location in the Minamihama district Upon arriving at the destination, he notices there are no buildings in the surrounding areas only ruins At that moment, his passenger asks… He quickly turns around to find his taxi… …empty Back on that fateful day, coastal towns were decimated and many lives were lost However, there was one town that survived despite being situation directly in the path of the tsunami The town of Fudai lies 510 km, or 320 miles, north of Tokyo and it stands as tall as ever as no homes were swept away that day In 1896 and 1933 there were massive earthquakes and tsunamis that flattened the area Many homes were destroyed and lives were taken Kotaku Wamura, a resident of Fudai witnessed bodies upon bodies being dug up from the earth in the aftermath He never forgot what he saw and vowed he would never let it happen again Later on, Wamura became the mayor of Fudai and in 1972, he started construction on a 15.5 meter or 51 foot floodgate This was completed in 1984 The total cost was 3.56 billion yen Many residents, as well as the village council, felt a floodgate of that size was unnecessary It was reckless spending from a foolish mayor However, Wamura insisted that this floodgate would one day save the town and its people He held that belief until 1997 where he died at the age of 88 On March 11th, 2011 the massive tsunami hit destroying towns along the north eastern coast Fudai, however, was spared Wamura’s floodgate had prevented much of the water from coming in He had saved the town that had doubted him Today, Kotaku Wamura is remembered as a hero, the saviour of Fudai Residents now visit his grave yearly to pay their respects At his retirement, Wamura stood before the village …to bid farewell, he said: I hope you enjoyed that video And hopefully you learned something! Please let me know your thoughts down below And check back later for I guess, Part 2, where I cover… 10 things you didn’t know about The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster Alright, please like and share this video and of course for more ASIANY videos Don’t forget to subscribe!