Friday, March 11, 2011
Earthquake in Japan: Eyewitness accounts

In the moments and hours following Japan's deadly earthquake and tsunami Friday, CNN iReport has received personal accounts from dozens of people in affected areas from Tokyo to Hawaii to Southern California.

In Fukushima, Japan, about 155 miles north of Tokyo, English teacher Ryan McDonald grabbed his iPod Touch as the earthquake shook his home. He later spoke with CNN International’s Jim Clancy about the chaos and the terror he felt while gas tanks were smashing together and he feared his building would fall.

At about the same time in Tokyo, Richard Dong of Shanghai and New York used his phone to capture footage of the earthquake as it happened from inside the Narita airport’s Delta lounge. He said parts of the ceiling fell off, objects like cups and glasses dropped, people started hiding under the tables and the lounge felt like it was “jumping.”

American missionary Mark John Bennett wasn't sure "if we were going to drop in the ocean or if the ocean was going to keep rising." He captured footage of water gushing out of the ground outside his home in Narashino, Chiba, Japan.


The quake spurred tsunami warnings for at least 50 countries or territories around the Pacific. Outside Waikiki, Hawaii, police moved through neighborhoods evacuating people, while guests at the Four Seasons Hualalai slept on the golf course, but remained in good spirits, said Greg Geertsen of Walnut Creek, California.

In California, some surfers ignored the warnings in search of big waves. San Diego iReporter Chris Morrow headed to Imperial Beach, where “locals felt no danger.” One surfer told her, “it may raise the tide a little bit, but it’s not a big deal. Plus, if you’re going to go, what else better way to go in life … than catching that big wave.”


Are you in one of the affected areas? If it's safe to do so, please share your images, footage and stories with iReport.

March 11, 2011
Click to view Kastiel's profile

The third one was was AMAZING. It was eerily surreal to see the ground move like that. My GOD!.

March 12, 2011
Click to view larena's profile

thank you dsashin

March 12, 2011
Click to view cmjacobsen's profile

The building is going to fall and canisters are going to explode and he continues to film in a personally dangerous situation. You continue to glamorize these fame-seekers in what is truly a tragedy. Same as another one running on CNNI where the guy called himself Tom Cruise while running to film a refinery blaze.

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