Saturday, March 12, 2011

Japan M8.9 Earthquake

I figured I should document this day.

11st March 2011, a magnitude of 8.9 hit northeast part of Japan. Highest ever recorded in Japan since they started keeping track. Sendai is the worst hit area. Total more than 1000 people perished in Japan from the quake and Tsunami.

I was in Tokyo when it happened. The biggest fear that I have ever experienced in my life.

The normal routine of daily life began and while chatting over MSN with my sis, at just before 3pm, the earth shook.

Earthquake is so normal in Japan. Normally once we experienced earthquake, we would momentarily paused whatever we were doing that moment, and hope that it would subsides, and it would. That's the usual case.

But the earth continued to shake more violently that day. Suddenly electricity were cut (first time in my stay here for 3 years). The gap of time for decision making is over. It's time to react.

Off Gas.
Open door of alternative escape route.
Grab mobile phone.
Grab wallet.
Grab keys.
Open main door. Run.

When I was outside my house, it was shaking so badly, I cant even aim properly to lock back the door. (Not sure why I was still thinking to lock it. habit I guess.)

I was in 6th floor. While running down the emergency stairs, I saw people on the streets frozen. They looked confused which was a rare sight since they were trained since young about earthquake and thus do not get panic easily. (The last earthquake I ran from, people were still walking their dogs, which made me look like an idiot).

I was shivering in fear when I touched the ground. Everybody got out of their house looking puzzled. I guess it's their first time experiencing such a huge earthquake too.

After the 3 minutes earthquake subsides, the phones were down, the electricity were down, except the internet. So immediately, I was trying to contact KimEan who is in Chiba and informing my safety to my family in Malaysia through Facebook.

After returning back to my building, I started packing some stuff like my passports, and some documents, mobile charges.. into a backpack. I kept my winter clothing on even in the room because the heater was off and yea, it was freezing.

Many many aftershocks afterwards. I was helplessly waiting by the exit ready to run again. Until the night came, I decided maybe I should hide under my blanket (cold.. ) with my mobile phone and torchlight by my side, while updating my safety, assuring my family that Tokyo is okay. It seems that my mom was so worried that she cant call to any of us.

It is reported that more than 100 aftershocks with 19 of them are with magnitude more than 6.
The blessing in disguise is that I am just glad that this is Japan, the truly advance country that is capable of handling such disastrous catastrophe in the most efficient way. Everything was in order, no chaos, no panic, top notch.

Public transportations in standstill, stranded people walking home.

Shinmaruko in total darkness.

Today, everything in Tokyo resume to normal. I just hope Sendai will soon recover from this never before disaster too.

Watch here. Supermarket in Tokyo.