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8.9 Earthquake, Tsunami Eyewitness Footage

The biggest earthquake on record to hit Japan has caused widespread destruction across the country. A 10-meter high tsunami, triggered by the tremor, has swept inland in many places swamping everything in its path.

8.9 earthquake, tsunami hit Japan
Photo from live video footage via the BBC

Ships, cars and whole buildings have been tossed around as if they were toys. One oil refinery has suffered a major explosion, a train is missing in the north of the country and many hundreds are missing.

Officials say 350 people are dead and about 500 missing, but it is feared the final death toll will be much greater.

CLICK HERE to watch on going news coverage via the BBC

Watch eyewitness footage taken during the quake, below:

Watch as products fall from store shelves in Japan:

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How can you help?

The Red Cross: The Japanese Red Cross has already deployed 11 national disaster response teams to respond to the crisis but you can support their efforts by donating money. Similar to their efforts to help Haiti after the earthquake in 2010, Red Cross is accepting donations either online or via text message. Simply text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 from your phone (you’ll be prompted to confirm with a second text reading YES).

International Medical Corps: To donate to this global non-profit’s Emergency Response Efforts fund, simply go to their site and select the amount you wish to donate (be sure to note if you want your donation to be a “recurring gift” for future relief efforts) and fill in your information.

GlobalGiving.org: Working with other organizations such as the International Medical Corps, D.C.-based organization GlobalGiving has launched the Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Relief Fund, which will give aid to on the ground organizations providing emergency services. They are accepting donations online with a funding goal of $90, 000.

Convoy of Hope: This non-profit focuses on disaster relief efforts and you can donate either online at their site or via text message by texting TSUNAMI to 50555 (you’ll also be prompted to confirm with a follow up text of YES).

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