Location of Onagawa in Miyagi Prefecture
|• Total||65.78 km2 (25.40 sq mi)|
|• Density||170/km2 (440/sq mi)|
|Time zone||Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)|
The town was formed in 1926. The town takes pride in the fact that it still has beaches with "squeaking sand", which has apparently become rare in Japan due to human induced environmental changes. Onagawa is a port town, and right at the intersection of two major ocean currents. It is also the location of a nuclear power plant, the Onagawa Nuclear Power Plant.
2011 earthquake and tsunami
The town was heavily damaged in the 11 March 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. The tsunami reached 15 metres (49 ft) in height and swept 1 kilometre (0.62 mi) inland, destroying the town centre and leaving over 1,000 people missing, with over 300 confirmed dead. At least 12 of the town's 25 designated evacuation sites were inundated by the tsunami. The city had previously been hit and partially destroyed by the tsunami caused by the 1960 Valdivia earthquake.
In an incident widely reported in the Chinese media, Mitsuru Sato, managing director of Sato Suisan, a fish processing company in the town, gave his life ensuring that all the firm's workers, including 20 female Chinese resident trainees, had evacuated safely to higher ground.
The town has a ferry service to the sacred island of Kinkasan.
- Enoshima, via Izushima
Notable people from Onagawa
- Onagawa Town website
- India rescue team pitches in, The Japan Times 4 April 2011
- NOAA Data
- Kyodo News, "Tsunami hit more than 100 designated evacuation sites", The Japan Times, 14 April 2011, p. 1.
- Pulvers, Roger, "Japan's crises spark wide alarm and some unlikely sympathizers", The Japan Times, 27 March 2011, p. 8.
- Official profile Retrieved 7 September 2013. (Japanese)
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