Google Street View Cars Document Town Still Uninhabitable from 2011 Disaster in Japan

Two years after the major earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster wiped out many towns in the Fukushima region of Japan, some towns remain uninhabitable.

Google is working with local officials in Namie-machi, a small city in Fukushima Prefecture, to help document the damage by sending Street View cars to take panoramic images of the abandoned town. This Street View imagery is available on Google Maps and on a page called Memories for the Future site, where you can explore before and after photos of the damaged area.

“Ever since the March disaster, the rest of the world has been moving forward, and many places in Japan have started recovering,” Namie-machi mayor Tamotsu Baba wrote on the Google blog. “But in Namie-machi time stands still. With the lingering nuclear hazard, we have only been able to do cursory work for two whole years. We would greatly appreciate it if you viewed this Street View imagery to understand the current state of Namie-machi and the tremendous gravity of the situation.” (Via The Atlantic).

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