UPDATE: UMass abroad students safe after Japan earthquake

By Herb Scribner

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An 8.9-magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Japan at 2:46 p.m. local time, and caused a tsunami to rip apart the islands. Reports from Japan suggest there have been over 100 deaths.

As of 3 p.m. on March 11, the International Programs Office at the University of Massachusetts called every university that could be effected by the earthquake and has reported that all UMass students have been found and are safe.

The earthquake generated a tsunami that sliced through Japan like paper, flooded the streets and destroyed homes. Japanese television displayed the disastrous results of the natural disaster.

Although the epicenter of the earthquake was over 200 miles away from Tokyo, the city still felt 30 aftershocks hours afterwards, one being of 7.1 magnitude.

Tokyo, one the world’s largest cities, became a balance beam as the earthquake caused buildings to sway back and forth.  Japan declared a state of emergency at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, however there have been no radiation leaks.

Tsunami’s won’t be limited to Japan either, as the US National Weather Service issued a tsunami warning for at least 50 countries and territories. This includes even the United States, as Hawaii has been begun preparing for a possible tsunami to reach its shores.

Japan’s earthquake comes a little over a year since the Jan. 12, 2010 earthquake that tore apart Chile.

Stay with Dailycollegian.com as we continue to update this story.

Herb Scribner can be reached at [email protected]