18 thoughts on “The Sea Reclaims The Land”

  1. Holy sh*t! We know the power of moving water, but seeing videos like these makes it more real that just “knowing” does. Those poor people.

    All that farmland covered by the tsumani is ruined, too, by the salt water – probably for years. Has anyone said how far it came inland? I havn’t seen anything about it.

  2. Barbara Skolaut,

    I vaguely recall reading/seeing/hearing somewhere that in some locations the water came ashore as much as 6 miles but I don’t have a source for that information.

  3. South Florida recovered from Hurricane Andrew. (People forget that the coast was destroyed by the rising seas there — entire neighborhoods that I’d grown up with as being basically in a jungle of huge trees were completely denuded.) Also, the Dutch have been reclaiming land from the sea for years. It can be done.

  4. I read that the tilt of the earth was affected. We have all these indications that life has been wiped out many times and we really have no clue when next. Isn’t it time we got serious about a humanity backup? As much as I like him, I don’t want Elon to get ALL the credit.

  5. Early on the camera panned away from the water and there were these people driving on a street – seeming oblivious to the terror about to strike. The camera never returned there..probably a good thing.

  6. I noticed in rickl’s link that Sendai has a pair of barriers, a sea wall and barrier islands set back a short distance from the sea wall. They were completely outclassed by the tsunamis, but I do wonder if they stole some of the energy from the surges. It seems to me that clever placement of such structures might steer or reflect energy from a series of large tsunami.

  7. One of the pictures in rickl’s link:

    Kashima in Minamisoma

    Looks as if, in the Before picture, humans turned a harbor into land.

    In the after picture the sea reclaimed it.

  8. …but I do wonder if they stole some of the energy from the surges.

    The surges, maybe — but the real destructive power of a tsunami isn’t in the surges, but in the sheer mass of water that is being moved.

    In a tsunami, the water level is actually being raised, albeit temporarily. The initial surge is spectacular, but if you hold it back so it can’t crash over the barrier, it will simply climb it, as inexorable as time itself.

    The only way to thwart that power is to be higher than the water will go. Because go it will.

  9. For the 3rd and 5th pictures, you can see the video of the tsunami coming ashore here.

    The video didn’t do justice, because the wave is already past the small town Fujitsaka in Sendai. You can see that anyone that didn’t evacuate never had a chance. Barns/greenhouses are just obliterated as the water continues to move inland. As a measure, the bridge in the picture is a .5 mile inland using the mainland (the inland shore of canal not the barrier island) as the starting point.

    Then again, the new Kashima harbor goes more than 2.5 miles inland. The good news during the event was much of that was agricultural farm land. The bad news now is that much that land was agricultural farm land.

  10. To add to what McGehee said, with a tsunami, it’s not the height of the wave that’s so much of an issue, it’s the length of the wave (miles upon miles long) that creates such a problem, as the water just keeps. on. coming.

  11. it’s not the height of the wave that’s so much of an issue, it’s the length of the wave (miles upon miles long)

    An excellent way of putting it. A seven-foot breaker on the beach won’t climb seven feet up the height of the land behind the beach; it’ll run out of water long before.

    A seven-foot tsunami will do its damnedest to climb seven feet above mean sea level for seven and a half minutes, no matter how far inland that extends. And then, seven and a half minutes after it began to recede, it’ll start rising again.

    And the second wave may be higher than the first.

  12. I understand the quake also dropped that part of Japan by up to two feet (think of a bent playing card suddenly snapping flat), which made the tsunami even worse.

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