The death toll climbs to over 10,000 and is still rising (Branigan 2). The disaster in Japan began without warning on Friday March 11, 2011 at 2:46pm with a 9.0 magnitude earthquake, the strongest ever recorded in the country (Fackler 3). A massive thirty-three foot high tsunami, generated by the earthquake, swept over lands in northern Japan, taking objects and debris with it. To make matters worse, the tsunami caused the cooling systems at several nuclear power plants to fail. The disaster in Japan was a tragic event, and it had a plethora of causes and effects.
There was a multitude of causes of the disaster in Japan. The first cause was a 9.0 magnitude earthquake that occurred off the coast of Japan. Japan is located in “The Ring of
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An ample number of buildings were destroyed or severely damaged. A journalist writes, “…buildings…designed to withstand major earthquakes, swayed” (Fackler 3). In addition, there was damage to roads and bridges. Land was displaced thirteen feet in some places in Japan (Schell). Second, the earthquake disrupted an oil refinery, and blazing fires broke out and swallowed buildings and homes. This can be compared to the 8.0 magnitude earthquake that happened on April 18, 1906 in San Francisco, California (“Famous Earthquakes”). The earthquake sparked thirty-four uncontrollable fires, which killed approximately five-hundred people. Lastly, the tsunami swept away and flooded numerous parts of Northern Japan. The tsunami swept over cities and even engulfed an airport. The massive wave swept away homes, trucks, ships, cars, buildings, bridges, highways, and other debris (Fackler 3). The disaster in Japan devastated the land, but it also affected the people living in Japan.
The nuclear disaster, tsunami, and earthquake initiated copious problems for the people living in Japan. To begin with, the nuclear reactors at the Fukushima power plant emitted radiation into the air because of the overheating rods and explosions at the reactors. Radiation can incite decreases in the production of blood cells and prolonged diseases and sicknesses such as cancer (Warry). At least twenty-two people have been contaminated by radiation and