➤ Haunting video catches grim carnage of the Japanese tsunami

➢ VIEW: Full three-minute aerial news footage as today’s tsunami races through the fields of Fukushima (BBC News website)

Japan, tsunami, Fukushima, news video,NHK World

Fukushima district: waves of black sludge carry buildings over fields of crops

➢ VIEW: Extended NHK World raw footage at YouTube of the same tsunami over-running dwellings at Fukushima
➢ VIEW: Even more appalling nine-minute tsunami sequence “as live” on NHK World
➢ VIEW: Shorter CNN clip as tsunamis hit Fukushima
➢ VIEW: Russia Today’s added helicopter view of successive giant tsunamis
➢ VIEW: Another YouTube version of the same tsunami over-running dwellings at Fukushima
➢ VIEW: Edited video package includes tsunami sequence at Guardian Online

❚ THE MOST DISTRESSING news footage of the day is this prolonged aerial sequence as an NHK news team pursues the grim rampage of the tsunami crossing the coastline of Japan to devour the farmland beyond. Nothing so visceral and horribly mesmerising has unfolded effectively in real time since 9-11 when we watched the wretched victims inside the Twin Towers trying to escape the flames.

Sendai, Japan, earthquake,map,USGSHere the flying camera witnesses the murderous progress of the tsunami through the Fukushima district after being triggered by an enormous undersea earthquake 80 miles offshore. A series of ferocious 20-ft high waves surge up the beaches to grab burning houses, boats and cars, shred them and speed all in a waterborne avalanche across the fields. We watch a river being engorged and surmounted within seconds, while the captive boats and swirling sludge career on towards motorists and pedestrians who we can see from above will be next to be consumed. It is heart-rending.

All along the seaboard, villages have been flattened, railway trains swept away, an oil refinery reduced to a hellish inferno, and you know thousands must be dead. Then came an eye-opening video, as if more proof were needed of the sheer might of water. The news footage below was shot at street level in Kesennuma City in north-eastern Japan where the camera operator risks joining the furious black torrent thrusting lorries and debris through the streets with incredible speed and force. The only course of action when a tsunami is announced is to head inland for high ground as fast as you can. Worth knowing when we, as fortunate observers of today’s horrors, take our next holiday anywhere in the Pacific.

➢ VIEW: More distressing scenes of the entire town of Tagajo in Miyagi on the rampage as a man videos his neighbours fleeing from the advancing debris
➢ VIEW: Submerged street scenes as the tsunami sweeps whole vehicles through Kesennuma City

Japan, tsunami, Fukushima, news video,BBC

Kesennuma City: the unstoppable torrent sweeps vehicles along streets

➢ Update March 13: Unimaginable series of satellite photos at the New York Times contrasting Japan’s coastal towns before and after devastation by tsunami

Sendai, Japan, Arahama, satellite photos, tsunami, devastation

The Arahama area of Sendai, Japan: satellite photos taken a year ago and yesterday by GeoEye. At the New YorkTimes website you can move the blue slider to and fro to appreciate exactly how uninhabitable is the wasteland left by the tsunami

➢ British Red Cross Japan Tsunami Appeal: “More than 500,000 people have been evacuated and are being housed in temporary centres”

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