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Fact Check: 2011 Post Erroneously Linked to The Recent Tsunami In Japan


Days after the earthquake and tsunami hit Japan, a video showing waves flooding roads, and washing away boats and cars is doing the rounds on social media. Many users claim that the video shows tsunami waves hitting the west coast of Japan after the recent earthquake.

A Facebook user posted the viral post with a caption: “Tsunami waves up to five metres high have reached the west coast of Japan. MeghUpdates”

You can check the post here.


NewsMobile fact-checked the viral post, and found it to be misleading.

Running a Reverse Image Search of the video keyframes, our team traced the original video on YouTube channel of ANN News, dated January 17, 2020, with a title: ‘Tsunami, Great East Japan Earthquake — Miyako city, Iwate Pref, Japan [11 Mar 2011]’.

To our surprise, the ANN News YouTube video matches with the viral clip.

Searching further, our team spotted another YouTube video on the official channel of ABC News, dated March 14, 2011, with a title: “Japan Earthquake: Shocking New Tsunami Video (03.14.11)”

Running a keyword search on ‘2011 Japan Tsunami’, we found a report by Al Jazeera with a similar image from the viral clip, dated March 13, 2011, with a title: The moment the tsunami hit Japan.

Another report published with the same image, confirmed that the video in question was originally from March 11, 2011.

A report by the National Geographic also carries an identical image.

The reports confirm that the incident happened on March 11, 2011, in Mikayo city of Japan, when a tsunami flooded highways, tossed boats and cars, and levelled cities.

Thus, it is clear from the above findings that the video in question is old and has no connection with recent earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

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