Significant numbers of people who were evacuated after last year’s tsunami do not want to return home, according to a survey by the local authorities in Morioka, Iwate Prefecture.
More than a third (36 percent) of the people who fled to Morioka want to continue living there, at one and a half year after the disaster, the survey showed. The city has a relatively low risk of damage from tsunami, according to Kyodo.
About 1,500 people who fled from coastal areas hardest hit by the tsunami wave are currently living in Morioka.
The tsunami forced over 300,000 people to move away from the Tohoku region of Japan, and resulted in shortages of food, water, shelter, medicine and fuel for survivors.
The magnitude 9.0 earthquake hit Japan’s northeast coast, killing nearly 16,000 and leaving nearly 3,300 unaccounted for. The country is still struggling with the human, economic and political costs.