Kumamoto marks 3rd anniversary of main quake

The Yomiuri Shimbun

Students of Tokai University are among those offering prayers for quake victims in Minami-Aso, Kumamoto Prefecture, on Tuesday morning.

The Yomiuri Shimbun KUMAMOTO — Tuesday marked the third anniversary of the main Kumamoto Earthquake, which registered the highest 7 on the Japanese seismic intensity scale two days after the foreshock of the same intensity. Forty-one people died in the main quake. People prayed for the victims at the damaged sites in the prefecture.

At 1:25 a.m., the same time as the main jolt hit three years ago, Tokai University students visited places including a site where three university students were killed in a collapsed apartment building in the Kurokawa district of the village of Minami-Aso. The university’s Aso Campus was located in the district.

“We’d like to remember what happened here,” said a 21-year-old female student who is in her junior year at the university’s school of agriculture.

In Mashiki town, where earthquakes measuring 7 were recorded twice, town government officials offered silent prayers for the dead.

“We want to make the town more vigorous than before the quakes,”said Mashiki Mayor Hironori Nishimura.

Early in the morning, the Kumamoto prefectural government conducted a drill in which prefectural government officials assemble as though an earthquake occurring. About 3,800 officials and related persons wearing outfits such as uniforms for responding to disasters gathered at the main prefectural government office and its branch offices, arriving by bicycle and on foot after receiving an email notifying them of an earthquake.

The foreshock of the Kumamoto Earthquake occurred at 9:26 p.m. on April 14, 2016, and the major quake followed about 28 hours later. A total of 50 people died in the two jolts and 16,519 were still living in temporary housing as of the end of March.Speech

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