Japan Earthquake Latest
Some new facts emerging:
A large number of tourists are thought to be among 400 passengers feared drowned after a high-speed bullet train and cruise ship went missing following the devastating Japanese earthquake earlier today.The massive earthquake - 8,000 times stronger than the one that hist New Zealand last month - sent a catastrophic 33 foot tsunami hurtling across the Pacific Ocean.
This afternoon, the Japanese declared a state of emergency at a nuclear power plant in Fukushima after the 8.9 quake caused the cooling system to fail.
Meanwhile, a ship carrying 100 people was swept away by the tsunami and bullet train carrying hundreds of passengers in the Miyagi region was missing. Their fate is unknown.
At least 200 to 300 bodies have been found in Sendai city, while dozens others were reported to have been killed in other areas of Japan.
Miyagi police also said that a ship carrying more than 100 people was washed away by a tsunami, without providing more details.
Kahului, on the island of Maui, has been worst hit. It was struck by waves measuring at least eight feet.
Many people were panic buying in stores and stocking up on petrol as the wave sped thousands of miles across the sea.
The earthquake was 8,000 times more powerful than the one that devastated Christchurch in New Zealand last month, experts said.
THE WORST QUAKES IN HISTORY
1.Valdivia, Chile, March 22, 1960 (magnitude of 9.5)
2.Prince William Sound, Alaska, USA, March 27, 1964 (9.2)
3.Sumatra, Indonesia, December 26, 2004 (9.1)
4.Kamchatka, Russia, November 4, 1952 (9.0)
5.Arica, Chile (then Peru), August 13, 1868 (9.0)
6.Sendai, Japan, March 11, 2011 (8.9)
Note that 5 of the 6 "Worst Quakes in History" occurred in this last generation.
A few more facts:
Dramatic footage showed the surge washing away cars, a bridge and buildings at the mouth of the Hirose-gawa River, which flows through the centre of Sendai, while a roof caved in at a graduation ceremony in Tokyo.
A large ship swept away by the tsunami rammed directly into a breakwater in Kesennuma city in the Miyagi region, according to footage on public broadcaster NHK, and numerous people are believed to have been injured.
A passenger train that was carrying dozens of travellers was unaccounted for prompting fears that it could have been destroyed amid the devastation.
More than four million people are without power and the Japanese army has now been deployed.
The quake struck at a depth of six miles, about 80 miles off the eastern coast, Japan’s meteorological agency said. The area is 240 miles (380km) north east of Tokyo.
There is a lot more contained within this article and it provides a comprehensive update of the situation.
Videos within this article are worth watching
BREAKING: Japan says radiation surges at nuclear plant: 1,000 times normal