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Disaster Relief Corps in Miyagi and Fukushima

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The following is a March 23 update on the water trucks dispatched on March 16 and Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps members’ subsequent efforts distributing water in areas affected by the March 11 earthquakes and tsunamis.

Ten members of Oyasato Diocese’s Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps left Tenri City on March 16 to deliver water trucks to Fukushima and Miyagi prefectures. The unit made a stop at Niigata Diocese Office in Niigata City, where members of Niigata Diocese’s Disaster Relief Corps took over.

Three water trucks designated as emergency vehicles arrived at the Miyagi Diocese Office in Sendai City at 4:00 p.m. on March 17. Niigata Diocese Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps members met with Sendai Waterworks Department to determine the areas where water distribution was most urgently needed.

Also on the afternoon of March 17, two other water trucks arrived in Fukushima Prefecture to deliver water in response to a request from Fukushima Medical University Hospital.

Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps members set out early the next morning on March 18 and stationed themselves in Senpo Bunkyokai in Shikahoncho, Sendai City. By 9:30 a.m., when they reached Midorigaoka, which is in an upland area approximately 500 meters away from the church, 120 people had already lined up for water. The team then distributed water to residential districts throughout Midorigaoka. Evacuees seeking water came in a continuous stream when the team cooperated with a local volunteer center in Matsuyama-machi.

Meanwhile, Miyagi Diocese Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps members surveyed the Pacific coastline that suffered extensive damage from the tsunami. They went to get a firmer grasp on which areas required water trucks after having met with government agencies. Among the areas they visited was Yamamoto-cho near the border with Fukushima Prefecture, where a third of the town was devastated by tsunami flooding.

On March 19, in addition to distributing water in the same districts they did the day before, Niigata Diocese Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps sent a water truck to Yamamoto-cho. They helped distribute water in four areas that remained out of the reach of government agencies.

On the afternoon of the same day, two more water trucks arrived at Miyagi Diocese Office. The Niigata Diocese Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps took five water trucks to the areas previously surveyed by the Miyagi-based Hinokishin Corps. Water was also distributed at a community center housing 50 evacuees in Tagajo City.

A total of 121 members of the Niigata Diocese Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps helped distribute approximately 5,6525 L or 14,932 gallons of water for five days until March 22. The Tochigi Diocese Hinokishin Corps is scheduled to take over between March 23 and 28.

The Saitama Diocese Office Hinokishin Corps left for Iwate Prefecture on March 20. They are scheduled to distribute water in affected areas until March 31.

(By TR Translation Staff. To Japanese article: 災救隊 宮城・福島へ(3月23日記)

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