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MID-DAY UPDATE: YouTube, Web bring Japan quake to your desktop

There is one big story today playing out around the world. An 8.9-magnitude earthquake hit northern Japan last night, triggering a tsunami that has spread across the Pacific. Wire reports estimate as many as 400 may be dead or missing.

YouTube and the Web are lit up with coverage of the devastation.

Reporter Adriene Hill is in Honolulu and is reporting on how the Japanese hotels and tourists prepared for a tsunami that reached Hawaii early Friday. She describes the first minutes after the waves hit - and how reefs have been exposed and boats put out to sea. She also explained how the state responded quickly to notify tourists and residents about the danger.

Rob Schmitz, from Shanghai, reported on how the earthquake will impact Japan's energy sectors - the country is reliant on nuclear power. He reports that it has also frozen the country's infrastructure and transportation industries. He also reported on how Japan is better prepared than other countries for earthquakes - though not of this scale.

Gregory Warner covered the story from back home, reporting updates on the White House and Red Cross instant response to the tsunami.

Bloomberg News reporter John Brisney experienced the Japanese earthquake first-hand. He talks with us about what it felt like and how Japanese companies are reacting.

From the BBC, reporter Kate McGeown reported from Jakarta, Indonesia, on how regional economies are reacting to the news - and how a big international tsunami test run was going to happen in a few weeks - using almost this exact event.

Duncan Bartlett, from London, joined us for an interview with the former BBC Tokyo Bureau chief knows the preparedness of the city to quakes firsthand - and how since the New Zealand earthquake, schools have stepped up their drills.

We also interview Ben Richardson, from Singapore, about how companies around the region are reacting, including Sony, Toyota, and shippers.

Meanwhile, around the web:

Japan has told the U-N nuclear watchdog that a heightened state of alert has been declared at a nuclear power plant after Friday's major earthquake.

The United States appears to be out of major danger from a tsunami caused by an earthquake near Japan, White House chief of staff Bill Daley said Friday.

Oil prices also dropped after the quake...They're down around 101 dollars a barrel in overseas trading. Japan is the world's third largest oil importer.

About the author

Matt Berger is the former Digital Director at Marketplace.
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