The images from Japan are shocking and worrisome; few words can express my condolences to the affected and the chagrin at their loss. The amount of energy release by this offshore earthquake, known as the Sendai Earthquake, is mind boggling. With three nuclear power plants in emergency shut down, one incapable of adequately cooling its core, the situation is grave at best.
The resultant tsunami tossed around ships, and there is news reports that shipyards are searching for their missing workers. With images of tugs and fishing boats washed inland by the dozen, overwhlemed port infrastructure and damaged shipyards, it is obvious that our brothers and sisters working on the sea, and on the coast, have paid a very heavy price today.
Living on an island, very close to a similar fault line, with the expectation of a similar event occuring soon, brings a lump in my throat that is hard to swallow. As a sailors, we are keenly aware of nature’s whims, which can have devastating consequences for us, so its with this in the back of my mind, that we practiced our earthquake drill just last month, the great BC Shakeout. In general we forget the purpose of preparadess and drills whether at sea or on our time off, until of course such a magnamous event reminds us of our frailty.
To make a donation, to help the people of Japan, click here or here, or support a reputable aid agency. To read about the earthquake and its impact, visit the Wikipedia page. Google is also beta running a crisis response page.