12.4.12

Sinking of the tsunami ghost ship


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The lonely voyage of the Japanese ghost ship has finally come to an end off the coast of Alaska. The 60 metre ship broke its anchor on the 11 march, when the the Japanese tsunami hit in 2011. The ship then spent a year drifting across the Pacific ocean.

The ship was waiting to be scrapped in Japan, when the magnitude-9.0 earthquake struck the country in March 2011, triggering a tsunami. The waves dislodged the ship and set it adrift.
In total, about 25 million tonnes of debris was swept out to sea on that fateful day.

The ship had no lighting or communications system and may have contained more than 7,500 litres of diesel fuel. Now It is about 300 metres at the bottom of the Gulf of Alaska some 240 kilometres off the coast.

The Environmental Protection Agency studied the problem and decided that it was safer to sink the ship and let the fuel evaporate in the open water.

The crew fired high explosive ammunition and it soon burst into flames, took on water and began sinking, officials said.

The earthquake started the world's worst nuclear crisis since the Chernobyl accident in 1986.
State officials are working to measure the danger of drifting debris including material affected by the damaged nuclear plant, to see if residents, seafood or wild game could be affected in Alaska.

In the year since the tsunami, debris from Japan has washed up on shores across the Pacific ocean.

State health officials have said that there is little need to be worried that debris landing on Alaskan shores will be contaminated by radiation.

Many people watched the operation on T.V. The ghost ship interested many people because it had survived and had spent an entire year drifting at sea slowly making its way across the Pacific Ocean.



Vocabulario
lonely > solitario

hit > golpeó

drifting (drift) a la deriva

scrapped > (scrap) convertirlo en chatarra
The ship was waiting to be scrapped in Japan,...
Se tenía previsto convertirlo en chatarra en Japón,...

struck > (strike) golpear, azotar
when the magnitude-9.0 earthquake struck the country in March 2011
cuando el terremoto de magnitud 9,0, azotó el país en marzo 2011

triggering > (trigger) provocar

dislodged (dislodge) deplazar

adrift > a la deriva

fired (fire) disparar

burst into flames > estallar en llamas


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