The 4th anniversary of the big earthquake and the nuclear power plant accident

It is the day of the big earthquake which killed over 20000 people in Tohoku area and caused the nuclear power plant accident in Fukushima. Four years have passed since then.

On that day 4 years ago, I was going out of an ophthalmologist office after having seen the doctor. All of sudden, a few seconds before the shaking started, there came a roaring of the ground. The massive shaking has made the clerk girls at the reception room squatted down screaming loud. Getting out of the building, I saw the power line poles made of concrete with steel rod were swinging like willow trees. It was not only strong in the magnitude of shaking but also has lasted for a long time, possibly, for 3 or 4 minutes. The ground has gon on roaring together with shaking.

The office of my practise as well as my home were messed with a lot of items fallen on the floor. The mass media have not stopped relentlessly showing the disastrous tsunami in Tohoku area. In a day or two, we were told the nuclear power plant was in serious condition. It eventually caused hydrogen explosions of the nuclear power buildings. I could not forget a few university professors who had explained in TV programs about the trouble of the nuclear plants in pretty optimistic tone. Later, they turned out to be the professionals involved in the nuclear power industry for years. The contamination of radioactive has started. It has not spared Kanto plain where we are located in the northern part. We felt the foundation of our lives were put at the risk of collapse. It was a sensation I had never felt in my life.

In such situation, I was apathic for anything. For the first 2 or 3 days, even attending to my office, I could hardly do any work without treating some emergent patients. I was only sitting before TV watching what was going on the disastered area. It took me a week or two to regain the daily routine.

I should admit there are still over one hundred thousand of people evacuated from home mainly due to the nuclear power plant accident. They have lost their community as well as some of their families. Of course, there are numerous people who have lost beloved persons due to this disaster. All of them are still enduring even more bitter and painful situation than I was. In this anniversary, I should remember of those people again and go on  doing whatever I could do for them.

We could not find out any solution for the nuclear power plant accident. The cause/mechanism how the accident has happened is not understood yet. The melted down nuclear fuel is not accesible. It may go on contaminating the environment as it has done for the past 4 years. The government intentionally ignores that only few percents of all the radioactive were released into tht environment. We were lucky that the contamination remained that level even though the present situation is still disastrous to the people in Fukushima and the adjascent areas. In spite of this fact, they are trying to start operation of the other nuclear power plants only for the profit of the power line company and the related industries. We should deny it by any means. We should learn from this on going tragedy in Fukushima.

This is an article I posted to my Japanese blog, and possibly to CWops reflector, a few days after the earthquake. I was trying to behave vividly at this time. I was, however, almost overwhelmed by the disaster and the event after that at this time. 


I know there are some friends abroad reading this blog.
Tonight, I got a phone call from Jim, N3JT, who kindly
asked me how we are doing. I thought I should let you
know how we are doing right now.

We are doing well now. We have resumed normal activities.
I have been working at own practice while so has my wife
been. We are not obliged to go to Tohoku area for help.
Just working for own patients is our responsibility.
I know a number of doctors are being sent or willing to
go to the suffered area. Most of them belong to universities
or major hospitals. I guess all what we could do is to
watch what's going on and to send items necessary for
them right now.

Our mother and brother/his wife are doing OK in a town
north of Sendai. As reported in CWops reflector, they have
been located inland away from the coast. That's why they
have spared the tsunami. The infrastructures have been
destroyed badly at his place as well, though. But they are
regaining them now. My brother told only the water supply
doesn't work at present. Of course, the transportation of
items are not enough at all. It takes them some time to get
foods etc at supermarkets. I have sent some medicine for my
mother since it is not available there. Anyway, the situation
is surely getting better. Of course, there are 3 hundreds
of thousands of refugees and almost 10 thousands of people
missing. The worst time is still going on for them. But I am
sure the hands of help is being now stretched to them, even
if it is slow.

The another anxiety is the consequence of the nuclear power
plant accident in Fukushima. Four reactors are in serious
troubles, as you might already know. I am afraid the power
company and the bureaucrats were trying to preserve and
recycle the plants after the accident in the beginning. They
should have given it up at the very beginning. One of the
vice presidents, as a news told, had declared it should be
ceased tonight. I don't know if it could be cooled down with
pouring water only. I hope they will completely isolate and
bury the reactors very soon. So far, the radioacitivity of
the atmosphere is not high or hazardous here. But I am afraid
the people around the reactors should give up living at their
homes for the coming years. I heard from Juergen, DJ3KR, that
the German government has decided to stop using, at least, 2
reactors there in the face of this serious accident. I believe
it is the right attitude toward nuclear plant even if the
power generation by nuclear plants apparently costs lower than
the other methods.

It is just the beginning of the long way of recovery ahead
from this devastating disaster. Please keep praying for those
sufferers. I just would do the same way. Please be relieved
for all of us are doing OK here. I always appreciate your
concern on us. My shack is still messed. The operation table
was badly broken by the quake. And the equipments slipped
down on the floor. I am not willing to arrange things again
there yet. It may take me some time to come back on the air.
But surely I will do, my friends. Take care. See you on the
air again soon.


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