Google Street View Documenting Japan's Nuke Evacuation Area
The area near the Fukushima nuclear plant was contaminated by radiation after the March 2011 tsunami and earthquake.A Google Street View team is in Japan for the two-year anniversary of the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami, taking stark photographs of a city about 12 miles from the heavily damaged Fukushima nuclear plant, which spread its radiation across a wide area. The photography project is being conducted in Namie, Japan, a city of about 21,000 people, which remains a ghost town since it was evacuated after the earthquake and tsunami, said Deanna Yick, a Google spokesperson. "Our team has been helping to map the damage as well as the recovery," including previous Street Maps excursions that mapped the carnage from the magnitude 9.0 earthquake and the deadly tsunami that followed, which killed more than 16,000 people and left another 2,900 missing, Yick said. "We have taken the Street View cars in on many occasions in conjunction with local officials." An early Street View project came in December 2011 when Google created a special "Build The Memory" Website to document photographs of the devastation and the areas as they were before the carnage. Those photos were collected beginning in July 2011 along more than 27,000 miles across affected regions of Japan.
The latest Street View project will provide photographs in areas that have been generally off limits due to the dangerous radiation that was released from the damaged nuclear plant, Yick said