The tragic events of the Kumamoto Earthquake has shocked the world, followed closely by another devastating earthquake in Ecquador.
Yesterday afternoon, the stricken village of Minami-aso continued to suffer the effects of the earthquake when a further two people were confirmed dead in a landslide.
Netizens send messages of support and sincere condolences to Kumamoto Prefecture. And so do we.
From Yahoo! Japan:
Two Confirmed Dead At Landslide In Minami Aso Bringing Total Fatalities To 44
April 18 marked the third day of the earthquakes around Kumamoto Prefecture, with the biggest quake hitting at a magnitude of 7.3, 6- strong on the shindo scale, early on April 16. This is the same level as the Great Hanshin Earthquake. On the afternoon of April 18 in the village of Minami-aso, Kumamoto Prefecture, two people were found suffocated at the scene of a landslide, and were later confirmed dead. This brings the toll of fatalities of the earthquake to 44 people.
Within Kumamoto Prefecture the aftershocks continue, and at around 8pm on April 18 there was an earthquake observed at shindo 5-strong in the Minami-aso region Kumamoto Prefecture and the western part of Oita Prefecture. At 1:30pm on the afternoon of April 18, around 94,000 people were evacuated in Kumamoto Prefecture.
At 11:30am, the Prefectural authorities announced that there were 9 people from Miniami-aso who were unaccounted for. Of the two people who passed away in the landslide, one has been identified. According to the village, this person was included in the 9 people announced missing by the Prefecture, leaving 8 people still missing.
It is generally taken that once a 72-hour period passes the chance of victims trapped in rubble from collapsed buildings surviving drops dramatically. As that limit approaches at dawn on April 19, the Self Defense Forces, the Fire Service, and the Police initiated their search early on the morning of April 18. That evening, they discovered one woman in the Takadanodai district of Kawayu, also Minami-aso, and by night they had also discovered a man nearby “Hinotori Log Cabin” in Nagano, Minami-aso. Both were found suffocated and were later confirmed dead.
The man was confirmed as Torii Taknori (42) of Umashino, Higashikagawa, Kagawa Prefecture. Police are still in the process of confirming the identity of the woman.
The situation is also serious for any victims of falling buildings, with Prefectural authorities estimating that 2200 buildings have been either partially or completely destroyed. Landslides were confirmed in 9 different locations by 2:30pm on the afternoon of April 18, including Minami-aso, Nishihara, and Kikuchi City. With further landslides being warned of, Uto City and Kosa township issued evacuation directions to some households.
On the other hand, recovery efforts have already begun. According to the Prefecture, at 3pm on April 18, 185,000 homes were without water supply, and of these the 115,000 for which Kumamoto City are responsible are expected to be re-connected by dawn on April 19.
According to JR Kyushu, there is as yet no prospect of re-starting the Kyushu Shinkansen; however, normal trains began running again between Kagoshima-Arao and Kumamoto on the afternoon of April 18, and there are connections between Hakata and Kumamoto.
With airport building damaged in the earthquake, Kumamoto Airport remains closed, but from April 19 there will be some flights by ANA and JAL.
Comments from Yahoo! Japan:
I pray from the bottom of my heart that there will be no more victims, and that we are near the end of the earthquakes.
This time the earthquakes have been unrelenting!
Do your best, Japan!
I’m really worried that the casualties keep on climbing. I hope there are no more victims, but will it be OK?
It may be fortunate that the number of casualties is low, but to the people who lost them, they were irreplaceable. I really hope they find the people who are still missing, whether they are dead or alive.
Please let just one more person be saved…
I’m so thankful to the Self Defense Forces, the Police, the Fire Service and the volunteers. Thank you so much. Let’s try our hardest.
I just want things to go back to normal.
And at first there were just 9 casualties…I really pray that the number doesn’t rise any further.
The number of victims has risen to 43. I really hope there aren’t many more, but when the aftershocks continue like this it makes me wonder whether Mount Aso will erupt.
Even if we can bear what’s happened up to now, when we think about when the next earthquake might come we don’t have time to be complacent.
The number of casualties is growing…
I pray for the souls of those who have passed away.
Now is not the time for the government to be going on about how at least the tax rises will be as anticipated.
I think it’s better to evacuate people outside of Kumamoto or to Honshu.
I guess it will take time to build temporary shelters for everyone, and it’s better that if we have an empty room we give them somewhere safe to sleep. With things are they are I feel really sorry for the elderly and for weak children.
Even when they start to clear things up they just collapse again.
Aside from being really tiring, it must be very psychologically damaging.
Say a prayer for the victims.
Why are the earthquakes continuing like that?
Don’t make us suffer any further…
I just can’t imagine how mothers with babies or elderly people are feeling.
I read in one article that they would evacuate people, but I really hope that they get them somewhere safe.
That couple came from Kanagawa, there was a car with a Kanagawa registration plate near by. They came in that. The car was fine…but…it must be awful for their family.