SEA BREEZES MAY 2011 • VOL 85 • NO. 785
Many of us who have been at sea will have experienced extreme weather, when we have been awed and even frightened by the raw power of nature. Your ship, which alongside in port, seemed so huge and powerful, suddenly becomes a tiny plaything on a mighty ocean. Once or twice in my own time at sea I was thankful that Blue Funnel built their ships stout and strong.
The recent massive earthquake (magnitude 9) which hit the north east coast of Japan on 11th March, triggering a huge tsunami, was however, on an almost unimaginable scale. The tsunami wreaked dreadful damage and an appaling loss of life. Tsunami defences and sea walls were not only breached, but totally overwhelmed, with people, cars, houses swept away and whole towns devastated. Large ships were picked up like toys and swept inland to be deposited far from their natural habitat. As if Japan had not suffered enough, its agony was compounded by serious damage to several nuclear plants and resultant radiation leaks. This dreadful natural disaster and its poisonous legacy will demand much of Japan and its people in the years to come, in what will be a recovery / rebuilding programme of gigantic proportion.
We can only express our sorrow and sympathy and hope that Japan will receive help and support from the international community as it faces the daunting challenges which lie ahead.
Captain Hamish A C Ross (Editor)