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Friday, March 2, 2012

Tsunami could have flooded areas along Tokyo Bay at high tide: officials

Had the March 11 tsunami struck at high tide, it likely would have overcome tidal barriers in Kisarazu, Chiba Prefecture, the Mainichi has learned.

The astronomical tide level at high tide in Kisarazu, Chiba Prefecture on March 11 was 1.7 meters at 7 a.m. If the tsunami had struck then, it would have added up to a height of 4.53 meters.

Tidal barriers at Kisarazu, which faces Tokyo Bay, stand between 3.7 and 4.1 meters high.

"If the tsunami had come during high tide, it would have definitely overcome the tidal barriers," a Kisarazu Municipal Government official commented.

The water level at a sluice gate in Kisarazu hit 3.78 meters at 5:46 p.m. during the tsunami -- almost twice as high as the two meter tsunami warning issued by the Japan Meteorological Agency at the time for Tokyo Bay. Read More