On March 11, 2011, a powerful 9.0 earthquake struck off the east coast of Honshu, Japan and a series of significant aftershocks have already struck the same area.
Government of Canada Officials in Ottawa and at our Embassy in Tokyo are closely monitoring the situation and are working closely with local authorities to identify and locate Canadians in need of assistance. Embassy staff are providing consular assistance where required.
Canada has already evacuated Canadian citizens from the Sendai region to Tokyo using a number of chartered buses.
DFAIT advises against non-essential travel to areas of the northern Honshu prefectures of Ibaraki, Tochigi, Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima. We advise against all travel within 80 km of the Fukushima nuclear power plant. Please consult the complete travel report.
Radiation levels and food and water safety in Japan
Following consultations with Government of Canada experts, and based on information available from the Government of Japan and the International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA), Canada has assessed that at this stage there is no indication that there is a radiation health risk to Canadian citizens in Japan and other countries in Asia.
Consult the Regional warning for the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant and surrounding areas for further information on areas affected.
Information on radiation levels in Japan contains more information on food and water safety, plus information on potassium iodine (KI).
Food safety in Canada
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), in collaboration with the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and Health Canada, is implementing enhanced import controls on milk products, fruits, and vegetables from areas of Japan affected by the ongoing nuclear crisis (Japanese prefectures of Fukushima, Gunma, Ibaraki, and Tochigi).
The situation in Japan is not expected to pose any health or safety risk to Canada.
In response to a first request by the Government of Japan, Canada, working with the Canadian Red Cross, has provided over 25,000 woven thermal wool blankets from its emergency relief supply stockpile.
In response to a subsequent request by the Government of Japan, Canada provided portable radiation survey meters and dosimeters to support the ongoing Japanese response to the nuclear emergency.
Canada also offered to Japan an array of expertise and technical assistance as part of international efforts to help Japan respond to and recover from the devastating earthquake.
How Canadians can help
Canadians often feel strongly about helping to support communities affected by this tragic natural disaster. Often the best way to help is to donate money to experienced humanitarian organizations that are raising money to support relief efforts or that are active in the emergency response.
There are currently 16 Canadian federal departments and agencies collaborating within Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada’s Task Force on Natural Disasters Abroad.
The Government of Canada is also working in close coordination with provincial and territorial authorities and stands ready to respond to other specific requests for assistance.