The giant TVs are silent, the neon lights dark and the bars of Tokyo half-empty. Two weeks after Japan’s deadly earthquake, the city that once never slept is learning to live with a new era of frugality.
Many public escalators are idle, the trains less frequent and the usually overflowing shelves of the round-the-clock convenience stores sparsely stocked.
In the daytime, under the crisp winter skies, the city almost seems to have recovered from the shock of the massive March 11 earthquake which sent a huge tsunami crashing into northeast Japan and triggered a nuclear crisis.
But nightfall reveals the reality — a fortnight after the twin disaster struck, the capital is still a shadow of its former self.
Nowhere is the contrast more evident than in the usually vibrant teen fashion district of Shibuya
Read the rest of the story: Lights out as Tokyo lives with power crunch.
SENDAI, Japan – People across a devastated swath of Japan suffered for a third day Sunday without water, electricity and proper food, as the country grappled with the enormity of a massive earthquake and tsunami that left more than 10,000 people dead in one area alone.
Japan’s prime minister called the crisis the most severe challenge the nation has faced since World War II, as the grim situation worsened. Friday’s disasters damaged a series of nuclear reactors, potentially sending one through a partial meltdown and adding radiation contamination to the fears of an unsettled public.
Temperatures began sinking toward freezing, compounding the misery of survivors along hundreds of miles (kilometers) of the northeastern coast battered by the tsunami that smashed inland with breathtaking fury. Rescuers pulled bodies from mud-covered jumbles of wrecked houses, shattered tree trunks, twisted cars and tangled power lines while survivors examined the ruined remains.
In Rikuzentakata, a port city of over 20,000 virtually wiped out by the tsunami, Etsuko Koyama escaped the water rushing through the third flood of her home but lost her grip on her daughter’s hand and has not found her.
Read the rest of the story: Water, power, food scarce in vast swaths of Japan .
Millions of households affected by Friday’s horrific temblor and tsunami are experiencing interruptions to water, gas and electricity supplies, and exactly when they will be restored is uncertain.
On Saturday, Tokyo Electric Power Co. warned that blackouts could strike in many areas, not just in the zone of devastation, because damage to power-generation facilities has left electricity in short supply.
Tepco called on both companies and individuals to save power and sought help from other utilities in supplying electricity. In addition, it decided to cancel a plan to suspend power supplies for about three hours on a rotational and regional basis Sunday but said it might be reconsidered for Monday.
Read the rest of the story: Tepco warns of blackouts, urges energy cut.