By: Erika Takeda Eastham
It was a dark morning on Friday March 11, 2011, when I walked down the stairs to find my mother glued to the television, tears streaming down her face. A 9.1 magnitude earthquake shook Japan 231 miles northeast of Tokyo with a depth of 15.2 miles. The earthquake caused a tsunami with 30-foot waves to rampage the northeast coast of the Tohoku region of Japan’s Honshu Island. To put it in perspective, the waves were as tall as three story buildings. The massive tsunami flooded more than 200 square miles of coastal land and damaged several nuclear reactors in the area. This tsunami decimated the coast in six minutes. This was the largest earthquake to ever hit Japan and killed nearly 22,000 people with an additional 500,000 people being forced to evacuate. The deadly earthquake was so large that it even damaged parts of Hawaii and California.
July 2011, Japan initiated a 10 year recovery timeline that focused on clearing debris, rebuilding infrastructure and housing, and managing the affected nuclear region. Since 2011, nearly all of the debris from the earthquake and tsunami have been recycled or incinerated and much of the infrastructure has been reconstructed. The rebuilding has been so successful, that Tokyo was awarded the 2020 (2021) Olympic host site. Below are a few pictures (1) that highlight the success of Japan’s rebuilding.
On this day of remembrance--the 10th Anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake-- it is important to attribute Japan’s ability to successfully rebuild to their disaster preparedness.
Throughout history, Japan had to combat a multitude of disasters and yet, they have come back stronger each time, learning from their mistakes and working in a kaizen methodology of continuous improvement.
At Urban Health Group, we take this time to honor the lives that have been lost in this tragedy.
As uncomfortable or tedious as it may seem, it is important to take time out to plan for the unexpected. Does this mean living in fear? No. Planning for the unexpected means taking certain precautions and taking control in a world of uncontrollable.
We can help you prepare for medical emergencies.
Urban Health Group LLC is a boutique-style, concierge for healthcare navigation and mental health support based in Oakland, California. We empower Black Indigenous People of Color (B.I.P.O.C.) with tools and support to effectively navigate their health and mental health needs for better wellness. We are eliminating healthcare disparities and reducing healthcare biases head on through strategic partnerships.
Our Plan Well for Care Course and One-in-One Healthcare Navigation services help Black, Indigenous, People of Color who want to make plans to provide for future needs by reducing the occurrence of being ignored by medical professionals, feeling helpless, and confused.
For more information on how you can Plan Well For Care, click here.