A survivor recounts the 2011 Fukushima disaster

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: Mar 05, 2021, 11:14 PM(IST)

The Japanese town of Tomioka – ravaged by the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster – is a shell of its former self. In some parts, houses and shops lie abandoned, and bin bags filled with contaminated soil line the streets. For Yuta Hatakeyama, who was 14 when his family had to leave their home, the town evokes bittersweet memories.

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There is one Yuta Hatakeyama, who was 14 when his family had to leave their home. For him, the town evokes bittersweet memories.

A decade after the quake and tsunami, people in the Japanese town of Tomioka ravaged by the Fukushima nuclear disaster are recounting what happened back in 2011.

Some parts, houses and shops lie abandoned, and bin bags filled with contaminated soil line the streets. 

There is one Yuta Hatakeyama, who was 14 when his family had to leave their home. For him, the town evokes bittersweet memories.

Hatakeyama remembers the 2011 days in the town.

"When I moved to a new place and heard people there stigmatising us for being evacuated, my heart really ached," he says.

The 24-year-old now believes the town must get rid of the bags filled with radioactive waste and make the town more liveable. 

Tomioka, which used to have 16,000 residents before the disaster, is now home to 1,600 people. The town is planning to lift most of its no-go zones by March 2023. 

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