Japan—Kesennuma City officials announced last week that the boat, which has become a symbol of the devastation of the disaster, will be torn down according to AP report. The soul-searching over the ship highlights how the aftermath of the tsunami disaster continues to torment Japan two years later.
Kesennuma city voted to destroy the 330-tonne Kyotokumaru was swept 750 metres inland when the tsunami reached the shoreline in northeastern Japan of 3011. It came to rest in an area that was almost completely flattened by the wave.
In the months afterwards, debris from the tsunami was quickly cleared off but the fishing boat has remained towering above the local neighbourhood and attracting visitors to the site.
The fishing boat Kyotokumaru owns by Fukushima fishing company has signed a contract with a nonprofit organization that recycles ships. The dismantling is likely to start in the next few weeks. Kesennuma Mayor Shigeru Sugawara was disappointed the landmark would soon be gone.
“I wanted to leave a visible symbol of what happened here for generations to come,” said Sugawara. “The decision has been made, and there’s nothing much more we can do.”
Opinion on the ship had been so divided it had been put to a vote by the city residents last month. Of the 14,083 responses, 68 percent, or 9,622 people, voted to have the ship destroyed. Only 16 percent voted to keep it, report said.