The 11 March 2011 tsunami at Kamaishi

The video footage linked below is particularly interesting because it is an unedited record of what happened at the fishing port of Kamaishi, towards the northern end of the east coast of Honshu, immediately after the earthquake. The film starts more or less directly after the shaking stopped; on the soundtrack you can hear people are still alarmed. It then shows what happened next over the period between the earthquake and the arrival of the tsunami, including a few people wandering around seemingly oblivious of the tsunami warning sirens.

Kamaishi was supposedly protected by a massive breakwater, 30 years in construction, at a cost of around 1.5 billion US$. The video shows what happened – after about 13 mins you can see in the distance that water is pouring over the top of the breakwater like a weir, and the harbour basin is filling up like a bath. Once the breakwater was submerged, there was nothing to stop the sea surging in.

Thanks to EERI for posting this in the first place.

A scene from the video. Click the link below for the full footage.

3 March 2011 tsunami at Kamaishi, Iwate

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