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[report整理] SENEWS-2011-03-21

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[Homework]SENEWS-2011-03-21

This is the VOA Special English Technology report.
A powerful earthquake struck the northeastern coast of Japan at 2:46pm local time on March 11th.Japan's Meteorological Agency released its first tsunami warnings just three minutes later.The country has one of the best earthquake early warning systems in the world.
There are more than four thousand seismic intensity metres in place throughout Japan to measure earthquake activity. These metres provide information within two minutes of an earthquake happening.Information about the strength and the centre of the earthquake can be learned within three minutes.
There are also concrete sea walls around much ofthe Japanese coast line.But these measures proved no much for the powerful earthquake and tsunami.C is a tsunami expert with the department of the civil and environmental engineering at the University of Southern Calofornia in Los.
Japan is one of the most well-prepared countries on earth in terms of the tsunami warnings.They had a warning,I think what went wrong is they had not anticipated even the size of this event.
He says there are two reasons for this.Japan has not had any event anywhere near as big as this one in the last 150 years.And scientists had not expected such a large earthquake happening off the coast of Japan.The nine point zero magnitude earthquake was the fourth most powerful earthquake ever recorded world wide.It was also the worst earthquake ever to hit Japan.The tsunami waves that followed were reported to have reached as high as 13 metres in some areas.
C says Japan's concrete sea walls were not built to handle such high waves.The concrete sea walls in many places in Japan are about ten metres,that's about 33 feets.In the S, they were about 3 metres,that's about 10 feets.So that shows you that at least in that area they were not expecting such a size of wave.
A tsunami wave can travel as fast as 8 hundred kilometres per hour.To get to higher ground,people would often have to travel for many kilometres.This can take more time than a fast travelling tsuname will permit.This is especially true in cases like Japan where the centre of the earthquake struck so close to the coast line.The tsunami waves followed almost immediately.Experts say early warning systems will continue to be limited by these facts until earthquakes and tsunamies can be predicted.
And that's the VOA Special English Technology report written by John.You can find more news about the disaster in Japan at our website voaspecialenglish.com.You can also find transcripts,mp3s and podcasts of our reports.And you can find us on facebook and youtube at voalearningenglish.I'm Steve Ember.

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