1 Year & 7 Months from Great East Japan Earthquake
This was my first visit to the great east Japan earthquake area after it happened on Mar. 11th 2011. 1 year and 7 months has passed. I felt sorry to be late but after the earthquake, Japan was in a unusual situation and we were busy keeping our life here in Tokyo area.
Kesennuma, Miyagi, Japan
I could visit Kesennuma because we could get a project creating panorama virtual shops here using Panoplaza. Before and after the virtual shop shooting I could stop by other spots which are affected by huge tsunami right after the earthquake. In Kesennuma city about 1500 people are killed or missed because of tsunami. I could even see the ground sinking in harbor area showing that this area is very near to ocean surface and it is really dangerous for tsunami and high tide.
Panorama Shooting in Kesennuma
Most of the harbor area was flattened by the earthquake and only about 5% of land space is utilized right now. Most of the rubble was already removed from the space and the area looks like a vacant site. Because all the street lamps were swept away by tsunami, it is completely dark in the night. This is the panorama photo taken in such area.
Panorama Shooting at No.18 Kyoutokumaru Ship
This big ship named No.18 Kyoutokumaru were carried by tsunami to land which is 500m away from the sea. The ship is about 60m long and 330 tons in weight. Since it is too huge to carry, it is still there. It now becomes a symbolic site and there are some tourist coming to this place.
Kesennuma Restoration Stall Village
I could have my dinner at Kesennuma Restoration Stall Village and could hear the story from one of the shop owner there.
Right After the Quake
– The blackout has occurred right after the quake and traffic signal was out of use.
– He avoided using the harbor road because of traffic jam occurred by blackout signal.
– When he drove down from the mountain side he could see tsunami coming from the ocean.
– All the family members were survived but his restaurant was swept away by tsunami.
– He could restart his restaurant here with many supporters.
– Gradually the sales is increasing thanks to word of mouth and other PR.
– These restaurants are not so much for locals but for tourists.
– Disaster area sightseeing is popular now and he thanks to that trend.
– You can visit Hiraizumi the world heritage sight after visiting Kesennuma.
Undergoing Economic Restoration
As you can see from the above report, hotels, restaurants, and souvenir shops are trying to recover from the disaster. They are waiting for more tourists to come back to this area. And I could also find that it is high time helping them economically and technically. We will continue contacting them and would like to help them in any ways.