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Suspected Tsunami Debris Found in Oregon

Tsunami debris

By Wendy Laursen 2015-04-10 20:19:21

A 9m (25-30 foot) section of a fiberglass boat spotted off the U.S.’s Oregon coast April 9 has been safely towed to Newport in Lincoln County. 

Dave Debeloy Enterprises of Newport hooked up to the object, suspected to be debris from the earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan in March 2011, late in the evening April 9 and took it to a marina in Newport Bay. 

Biologists from Oregon Coast Aquarium and Oregon State University’s Hatfield Marine Science Center inspected the debris while it was still at sea and, after consulting with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, determined it posed a low threat of carrying invasive species.

Several live yellowtail jack fish, native to the west Pacific, will be removed and delivered into the care of the Oregon Coast Aquarium. The debris will be dewatered, inspected further by university researchers, then dismantled and disposed of in a local landfill.

The 2011 earthquake was the most powerful earthquake ever recorded to have hit Japan, and the fourth most powerful earthquake in the world since modern record-keeping began in 1900. The earthquake triggered powerful tsunami waves that reached heights of up to 40.5m (133 feet) and travelled up to 10km (six miles) inland. 

On 10 March 2015, a Japanese National Police Agency report confirmed 15,891 deaths, 6,152 injured, and 2,584 people missing as well as 228,863 people living away from their home in either temporary housing or due to permanent relocation.

According to Wikipedia, the earthquake moved Honshu (the main island of Japan) 2.4m (8 feet) east and shifted the Earth on its axis by estimates of between 10cm (4 inches) and 25cm (10 inches).