Japan Earthquake: At Least 94 Dead, Over 200 Missing

(BrightPress.org) – The death toll from the Japanese 7.6 magnitude earthquake in Ishikawa prefecture on New Year’s Day has risen to 94 while the number of people still missing has dropped to 222, according to a Newsmax report.

One woman was pulled from rubble three days after the quake, along with an elderly man who survived the collapse of his home in Suzu, a city near the epicenter.

Firefighters helped extricate the man carefully and gave him words of encouragement and praise for surviving so long. There are many families still sifting through the rubble looking for their loved ones.

Officials from Ishikawa said that 55 of the dead were from the city of Wajima, and 23 deaths were from Suzu while still more were reported in the surrounding towns and villages. Over 460 injuries were reported with 24 being serious or life-threatening injuries.

The quake was so bad that the coastline in western Japan shifted, pushing some 250 meters (~820 feet) into the ocean, according to the University of Tokyo’s Earthquake Research Institute.

A large fire was triggered in Wajima by the quake. The city was also hit with tsunamis and landslides which impacted infrastructure like roads, electricity, and communications, hampering rescue efforts.

The U.S. announced its intention to contribute $100,000 toward the recovery efforts on Friday, January 5th. The U.S. is sending medical supplies, food, water, blankets, and promises of additional aid.

Japanese soldiers were deployed to the Noto Peninsula where the quake originated.

Officials are concerned about disease spreading at evacuation shelters after some deaths have been reported. Thirty-four thousand people are being temporarily housed in shelters, with many of them elderly.

Masashi Tomari, 67, reported sleeping on a floor with a single blanket and no heat. He indicated that space heaters eventually arrived three days after the quake. He called the conditions terrible and cold. Tomari is an oyster farmer from Anamizu City.

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