Note: In no way is this brief report intended to minimize, mitigate, or delimit our concern for all the people of Japan or for any of the victims of the earthquake and tsunami or the nuclear powerplant crisis there. This is a photography-related website, and we discuss many things as they relate to photography. I hope it goes without saying that that does not mean that's the only thing we care about. —Ed.
Canon Inc. has this morning issued a Damage Report [link is a PDF download] detailing the suspension of operations at several operation sites and group companies. For most, the resumption of normal operations is marked "To Be Determined," but in the case of the Utsunomiya plants and Fukushima Canon Inc., an additional note is appended saying that "additional time will likely be needed before operations resume." There are 15 employee injuries reported at the Utsunomiya plant.
The report also notes that if Canon has to shut down operations for more than a month, it will consider making use of undamaged alternate sites as a means of continuing production.
'They're just coming to take photos'
I noted that a Japanese woman in this Reuters video mentions that "nobody's coming here. They're just coming to take photos, and that's about it."
Speaking of photos, few things have brought home the incredible power of the tsunami more than these interactive shutter-curtain photos at nytimes.com. They're comparative satellite photos before and after the tidal wave. Astonishing and horrifying.
Particularly heartbreaking is that apparently, in areas largely swept away by the tsunami, few survivors are being found.
Just as a point of interest (and to inject a faint note of hopefulness after a very discouraging weekend following the news), I happened to remember from my housing research a few years ago that there's a company called Topsider that builds hurricane- and tsunami-resistant houses. They use a radiating pattern of reinforced post-and-beam atop a concrete piling.
(Thanks to Vlatko Juric-Kokic)
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Original contents copyright 2011 by Michael C. Johnston and/or the bylined author. All Rights Reserved.
Featured Comment by Marc Saylor: "The designers of the Topsider tsunami-proof house might want to add the possibility of passenger ferries to their contingency plans."