Up to the minute ...

Stars and Stripes reporters across Japan and the world are sending disaster dispatches as they gather new facts, updated in real time. All times are local Tokyo time.  Japan is 13 hours ahead of the East Coast. So for example, 8 a.m. EDT is 9 p.m. in Japan.

See previous postings here.

For extended coverage, see the Earthquake Disaster in Japan page.

Misawa - updated slides posted


     4:17 p.m. Saturday Tokyo time

Posted to NAF Atsugi Facebook page:

Updated slides posted as of Saturday, 3pm in the photos section.

Link: http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/AFNMisawa

-- Matt Orr

Atsugi announces last voluntary departure flight

   1:01 p.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to NAF Atsugi Facebook page:
‎ATTENTION – The last voluntary departure flight from NAF Atsugi bound for Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEATAC) will depart Monday Mar. 28. Please contact your command representative if you still want to depart. The show time will be 12 p.m. at Cinema 77 on Mar. 28th.

- Matt Orr

Potassium Iodide distribution sites to be consolidated

   12:22 p.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka Facebook page:

Starting Saturday, March 26 at noon, Potassium Iodide distribution sites will be consolidated to CFAY Purdy Gym, Branch Health Annex Yokohama and Branch Health Clinic Atsugi. All sites will remain open 24 hours a day.
Distribution remains a precautionary measure.
Do NOT take Potassium Iodide unless you are told to do so by military officials.
The distribution site consolidation was prompted by a declining public request for Potassium Iodide.

- Matt Orr

Additional flight to depart Yokota on Tuesday

   11:44 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka Facebook page:

For those still interested in voluntary departure, an additional flight will be available out of Yokota 07:45, Tuesday March 29.

All eligible persons wishing to sign up for the flight please call 243-1719 or 243-1704. We are still researching how many pets this flight can accept.

- Matt Orr

DODEA arrival center information

   10:31 Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA)
Facebook page:

If we missed anyone at the arrival centers from those first fights that arrived from Japan, we are sorry. Please call our Crisis line if you need any help (In the United States, the toll-free number is 888-441-158.
Visit our website for more information as well at www.dodea.edu

- Matt Orr

Kinnick High School open for business

   10:29 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA)
Facebook page:

DoDEA’s Kinnick HS is open for business and taking care of families who are remaining in Japan.


- Matt Orr

Updated slides from Misawa

   10:26 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to AFN Misawa Facebook page in their photos section:


- Matt Orr


Situation in Japan: Links for information and online resources

   8:56 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA)
Facebook page via MilitrayOneSource.com:


- Matt Orr

Breach possible at troubled Japanese power plant

   8:51 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

A possible breach at Japan's troubled nuclear plant escalated the crisis anew Friday, two full weeks after an earthquake and tsunami first compromised the facility. The development suggested radioactive contamination may be worse than first thought, with tainted groundwater the most likely consequence.

Read full story here.

- The Associated Press

Displaced students are eligible to compete in Stateside sports

   8:46 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to DoDEA Facebook page via Aledo Times Record online:

Bloomington, Ill. — Illinois High School Association (IHSA) Executive Director Marty Hickman ruled today that any students displaced by the earthquake and subsequent disasters in Japan that relocate to IHSA member schools will be granted immediate eligibility to participate in IHSA sports and activities.
The United State Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) recently informed IHSA member schools that it has issued a voluntary authorized departure from the Island of Honshu, Japan for United States military family members. The number of families that will relocate from Japan to the United States, or to Illinois, is unknown at this point.
"We don't know if we will have any high school students relocating from Japan to IHSA member schools," said IHSA Executive Director Marty Hickman. "But if we do, we want to help these students transition back to normalcy in any way that we can."

Copyright 2011 Aledo Times Record. Some rights reserved

Link to story:

- Matt Orr

Misawa updates medical information slide

   8:40 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to AFN Misawa Facebook page:

Hey Misawa, there is a new slide with info on Tricare and dental while you are away. Check it out in the photo section.
Posted Saturday, 7:47 a.m.

Link to slide in photo section:

- Matt Orr

Japan relocation guide slides posted

   8:23 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to Misawa Emergency Management Facebook page:

Link to slides in their photos section:

- Matt Orr

Atsugi family picnic, Sunday

   8:19 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to NAF Atsugi Facebook page:

NAF Atsugi Family Picnic on March 27th
Please come join us for a Family Picnic at Ranger Gym Park, Pavilions 1A & 1B. There are many of us who have elected to stay. Let's get together and enjoy the day as one community.   The day will be Sunday, March 27, at noon. Bring something to BBQ for yourselves or to share. Bring a dish and drinks to share. Everyone is invited. Bring the kids. Bring your pets. Let's meet up and have a great time!!!

- Matt Orr

Atsugi asking for potluck food donations, today

   8:17 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Posted to NAF Atsugi Facebook page:

‎Food request for JMSDF for tomorrow March 26, Saturday
There are 99 JMSDF personnel from Iwakuni who have been working around the clock to help with the relief efforts up north. Many organizations and private individuals have been working together in the past few days to support our sailors and the Marines who have been stationed here to help by preparing homemade meals.   As Joe Mortimer said, "We would like to extend this opportunity to the JMSDF personnel as well since we are all one community working together. We have a great alliance! US Forces and JMSDF personnel all live and work here together in Japan and we share this home together.   Same method. Potluck style. Deliver to the Red Cross and 11:30 a.m. Saturday, March 26. I will be here to receive the food. Thank you so much for your help.

- Matt Orr

AP update on the latest developments

   2:20 a.m. Saturday, Tokyo time

Japanese nuclear authorities suspect a reactor at the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant was breached. That could mean more serious radioactive leaks. Some work at the plant was halted to check levels. Hundreds of thousands of survivors remain camped out in schools and civic buildings two weeks after the tsunami and earthquake. Some 660,000 households do not have water and more than 209,000 do not have electricity. The official death toll passes 10,000 people Friday. Another 17,400 people are missing, though those figures probably have some overlap.

Read an expanded version of the update here.

Updated slides for Misawa posted

   8:11 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on AFN Misawa Facebook page:

Team Misawa - new Misawa update slides in the photo section.

Link: http://www.facebook.com/?ref=logo#!/AFNMisawa

- Matt Orr

Updated slides for Misawa

   8:09 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on AFN Misawa Facebook page:

Team Misawa- new Misawa update slides in the photo section...

Link: http://www.facebook.com/?ref=logo#!/AFNMisawa

- Matt Orr

Yokota exempt from power outages

   7:58 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Yokota Air Base Facebook page:

Yokota is exempt from power outages for the next two days -- keep conserving energy!

- Matt Orr

 Tricare information for U.S. returnees

   6:47 p.m. Friday Tokyo time

Posted on NAF Misawa Facebook page via slideshare.net:

TRICARE information for families who have voluntarily returned to the United States from Honshu, Japan.

Link: http://www.slideshare.net/nafmisawa/tricare-note

- Matt Orr

Yokota Chili’s Grill and Bar hours of operation

   6:02 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Yokota Air Base Facebook page:

CHILI’S GRILL & BAR – YES, WE’RE OPEN! Wed – Sun: Open 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Lunch: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.; “To Go” meals only; tables will remain open for customers who would like to pick up their food at the To Go Window and dine at the restaurant, but in-house dining service will be unavailable. Dinner: 4 p.m. – 10 p.m.; full service.

- Matt Orr

Weekend scheduled power outage canceled

   5:44 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Yokota Air Base Facebook page:

Fussa City Office Giant Voice public address system just announced that the scheduled power outage for Saturday and Sunday has been canceled.

- Matt Orr

Emergency visa services update

   5:33 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Naval Legal Service Office Pacific Facebook page:

The U.S. Embassy's walk-in service for military dependents participating in the Military Assisted Departure will be discontinued after Wednesday, March 30.

After that date, military dependents are welcome to apply for visa appointments through the regular procedures described on U.S. Embassy website.

The U.S. Embassy will try to accommodate requests for emergency appointments from military dependents if they note their status in their request.

- Matt Orr

No increased radiation levels at Yokota

   5:26 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Yakota Air Base Facebook page:

Air monitoring results indicate no increased radiation levels at Yokota. Readings remain at normal everyday levels.

Today’s levels average 19.2 µR. This is equivalent to everyday levels at Salt Lake City, Utah.

- Matt Orr

Misawa updated slides as of Friday

   4:21 p.m. Friday Tokyo time

Posted on AFN Misawa Facebook page:

Link: http://tinyurl.com/5v3f2s8

- Matt Orr

Flight time tonight has changed

   3:57 p.m. Friday Tokyo time

Posted on Yokota Air Base Facebook page:

Attention: All Processed Volunteer Assisted Departure personnel scheduled to depart tonight need to report to the pax terminal ASAP because the flight time has changed. Bring all required documents along with your authorized luggage/bags.

Please call the Navy Regional Contracting Center if you have any questions.

- Matt Orr

Yokosuka Personnel Support Detachment to stay open over weekend

   3:31 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Commander Fleet Activities Facebook page:

PSD will be open through the weekend, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, to process requests for CTO ticketing.
For assistance after hours, please contact the PSD Duty Officer at 090-3432-6302.

- Matt Orr

Japan nuke plant reactor core may be breached

   3:09 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Japanese nuclear safety officials say they suspect that the reactor core at one unit of the troubled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant may have breached. That raises the possibility of more severe radioactive contamination to the environment.

- The Associated Press

Let's move to Estonia!

   3:01 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Jeremy Singer-Vine had an interesting piece in Slate.com this morning.

He asks, which countries are least vulnerable to natural disaster?
Probably Estonia, Qatar, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, and Andorra, he writes. EM-DAT, a catalog of more than 11,000 major natural disasters, has no record of fatal floods, droughts, earthquakes, or severe storms in any of these countries from 1900 to 2009. (Nor could the Explainer find news reports of such incidents after 2009). Run by Belgium's Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Disaster, EM-DAT is the gold standard for these statistics.
He offers "a word of caution" for those interested only in so-called acts of God: The natural-disasters category also includes catastrophes that generally involve some human blame, such as famine, cholera, and wildfires.

He writes this because a 6.8-magnitude earthquake rocked Burma on Thursday. Meanwhile, Japan is still struggling to limit the damage inflicted by its March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

In 2005, Slate's "Explainer" column named Storrs, Conn., the U.S. city safest from natural disaster.  I bet they're not feeling the same way in Durham, N.C., today.


- Pat Dickson

Support info for families arriving stateside from Japan

   2:50 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on NAF Misawa Facebook page via slideshare.net:
Attached is the latest information about Navy Installations Command's support for families arriving stateside from Japan.



- Matt Orr

Yokota Cherry Blossom festival canceled

   2:34 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Yokota Air Base Facebook page:
Fussa City Office just made a public announcement on the following: Cherry Blossom Viewing Festival scheduled on 25 March – 3 April has been cancelled.

- Matt Orr

Yokota's East Shoppette extends hours

   2:32 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Yokota Air Base Facebook page:
Effective immediately, the East Shoppette has temporarily extended its operating hours to 11 p.m. daily.
Operating hours are now 6 a.m. – 11 p.m. daily.

- Matt Orr

Colonel Feather on Eagle 810 today

   1:40 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Yokota Air Base Facebook page:
Col Feather will be on Eagle 810 today at 3 p.m. -- tune in for the latest news!

- Matt Orr

Police: More than 10,000 dead from Japan disaster

   1:38 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Japan's police agency says the death toll from the earthquake and tsunami two weeks ago has topped 10,000.

The National Police Agency said Friday that more than 17,440 people are listed as missing.

- The Associated Press

Misawa commander's open line

   1:36 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on AFN Misawa Facebook page:
Commander's Open Line, Friday Clip 1 of 4


- Matt Orr

MAVDD flights from Atsugi or Yokota re-entry documents

   1:32 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on NAF Atsugi Facebook page:

IMPORTANT: ALL personnel who departed on one of the MAVDD flights from Atsugi or Yokota need to have the following documents with them when they re-enter Japan:
* Military ID
* Passport (with a re-entry permit)
* Copy of Orders under which you departed Japan
Additionally, they should bring any other documentation (including, but not limited to, a copy of the sponsor's ID card, a copy of their PCS orders bringing them to Japan, etc.) that tends to show they are a SOFA-sponsored DoD dependent.

- Matt Orr

Refund travel policies of major U.S. carriers for Japanese travel

   1:27 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Naval Legal Service Office Pacific Facebook page:



- Matt Orr

Powers of attorney and other legal information

   1:25 p.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka Facebook page:

From Naval Legal Service Office Pacific:
For those seeking powers of attorney or other legal assistance, NLSO Pacific is open weekdays from 0730-1630 on the 2nd floor of PSD. For assistance after hours or on the weekend, please call our CDO at 080-5025-8088. Thank you.

- Matt Orr

Ambassador Roos speaks of Miyagi visit

   11:13 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka Facebook page via YouTube:

By US Embassy Tokyo on Friday, March 25, 2011 at 10:17am
 March 24 - United States Ambassador to Japan John V. Roos delivered a heart-felt message about his visit to earthquake and tsunami stricken Miyagi Prefecture.



- Matt Orr

Latest on quake dead, missing

   11:11 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

After two weeks of the March 11 earthquake, the fatality is reaching 10,000, while people still missing are estimated to be more than 17,000. The Japanese Police Agency said the death toll as of Friday is 9,811 and people reportedly missing are 17,541. Yet, the figure is tentative. There are countless numbers of families whose entire members have swept away by the tsunami. More than 245,000 people who lost their homes, some temporarily while many permanently, are taking shelters at school gymnasiums or other public and private facilities.

- Chiyomi Sumida

Drinking water in Tokyo deemed safe

   10:47 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka via U.S. Pacific CommandFacebook page and U.S> Embassy Tokyo:

Update on Tokyo Water


‎(Posted March 25, 9 a.m. JST) The United States Government advises American citizens that, in accordance with guidelines that apply to water in the United States and based on analysis of tap water samples for radioactive iodine on March 24, 2011, the water in Tokyo is safe for drinking.

U.S. Government officials are consulting with health experts and radiation experts, in both the United States and Japan, and are continuously monitoring the situation.

- Matt Orr

Yokota: Still time to process, fly out today

   10:45 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on Yokota Air Base Facebook page:

Sorry this is late, but still time to get over there now: Those Yokota eligible family members who still desire to depart Japan can go to the Taiyo today at 0930 for processing to depart on a flight leaving Yokota today.

- Matt Orr

Atsugi asking for prepared food donations for today's pot luck

   10:43 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on NAF Atsugi Facebook page:

NAF Atsugi
The plan is to make lunch for Air Ops and Hangar 183 today. Pot luck style so
whatever people can make is more than welcome and greatly appreciated. Food
can be dropped off at the Red Cross office at 1130am.

Ruthie Clearwater
Field Office Coordinator
American Red Cross
Serving the NAF Atsugi community

DSN: (315) 264-6794
Civilian: 011-81-046-763-6794
Cell: 090-9686-1853

- Matt Orr

Atsugi airborne radiation levels less than the limit

   10:19 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on NAF Atsugi Facebook page:

‎Friday, 10 a.m. - All airborne radioactivity samples are less than the limit. Radiation levels remain at 0.01 mr/hr, minimum detectable on the instruments.

- Matt Orr

Misawa slide updates

   9:59 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on AFN Misawa Facebook page:

Slides located in the AFN Misawa Facebook page under photos.


- Matt Orr

Time-lapse map of earthquake

   9:09 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on NAF Atsugi page:

A time-lapse visualization of the March 11, 2011 earthquake off the coast of Sendai, Japan and its aftershocks.

Link: www.japanquakemap.com

- Matt Orr

DODEA welcoming centers in U.S. available to departing parents, employees

   9:06 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on DoDEA Pacific page:

For DoDEA students, parents and employees voluntarily departing on a military assisted flight, there will be welcoming centers upon your initial arrival in the USA. DoDEA will have representatives who can assist with questions, forms, and other information. Look for the DoDEA desk at each center.

- Matt Orr

Slides updated on Misawa Facebook page

   8:22 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on AFN Misawa Facebook page in their photos section:


- Matt Orr

Misawa 'Openline' has started

   8:20 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on AFN Misawa Facebook page:

Commanders OpenLine starts at 8:05 a.m. on AFN AM 1575!

- Matt Orr

Misawa Commander's Update

   8:16 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Posted on AFN Misawa Facebook page:

Misawa Personnel,
The base has nearly completed the recently announced voluntary departures. Tune into channel 20 for the most recent updates, and more information will be provided when available. Your patience is greatly appreciated. Misawa is returning to 100% mission capability and striving to return to normal function. Every ounce of energy saved can be used by our neighbors outside the gate. For this reason, it is imperative that all personnel continue to conserve resources. Use it if you need it, if you don’t need it, turn it off. Relief effort support is still ongoing. You may see transient individuals from news media such as CNN, CBS, and ABC around the base. There are also relief aid organizations such as USAID using Misawa as a hub as we support Operation TOMODACHI. We are providing assistance to the Japanese community; you can sign up at the Mokuteki or go to Facebook under “Misawa Helps” if you would like to volunteer.
Concerning the nuclear reactor situation: Misawa AB leadership has initiated a travel restriction to remain outside of 200 miles of the Fukushima power plant. This equates to an East-West line at the intersection of highways 395 and 4. Leadership will continue to closely monitor the situation to ensure the safety of US military personnel and their families. Official studies indicate that Misawa is unlikely to be impacted by the nuclear disaster at the three affected facilities. Misawa is 232 miles north of Fukushima and radioactive contamination is expected to travel south and east.

See full update here.

- Matt Orr

Update from Pacific Command

   1:20 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Update from Pacific Command on the various services' efforts and contributions to Operation Tomodachi: 
 -- Dave Ornauer

Interview with Vice Admiral Adam Robinson, Navy surgeon general

   2:15 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Vice Admiral Adam Robinson, Navy surgeon general, on health concerns of families returning to Japan after voluntary departure:
 -- Dave Ornauer

Denver joins entry points for families leaving Japan

   12:37 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas -- Eligible family members who voluntarily leave Japan will arrive at Denver International Airport starting today aboard chartered military flights, according to a news release from U.S. Army North.

Denver is the third U.S. arrival location for these flights, officials said. Flights have been arriving at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in Washington state and Travis Air Force Base, Calif., since March 19.

Military representatives from U.S. Army North will help arriving passengers with follow-on arrangements.

In what officials describe as a prudent precaution in the wake of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan, the Defense Department is providing eligible family members of department personnel in Japan an opportunity to leave voluntarily at government expense.

-- Patrick Dickson

Tsunami concert to be held

   12:20 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

Tsunami relief concert Sunday in Koza City, outside of Kadena Air Base
 -- Dave Ornauer

AFN-Okinawa interview with Kadena Air Base's 18th Wing commander

   12:10 a.m. Friday, Tokyo time

AFN-Okinawa interview with Kadena Air Base's 18th Wing commander and 18th medical group deputy commander, regarding the island's part in the relief effort. Good information.


-- Dave Ornauer

Interview with Col. Feather, 374th Airlift Wing Commander

4:53 p.m. Thursday, Tokyo time

‎Posted on DODEA Pacific Facebook page:

Thursday's interview with 374th Airlift Wing commander, Col. Otto Feather on Eagle810.

Link: http://tinyurl.com/5t9yqca

-Matt Orr

Atsugi calling category 4, names A - M

4:53 p.m. Thursday, Tokyo time

‎Posted on NAF Atsugi Facebook page:

ATTENTION – All Category #4 personnel with last names from A through M report to Cinema 77 at this time.

-Matt Orr

See previous postings here.


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