23 Mar '11, 5am

With no fuel for cremations, some Japanese families were forced to bury their dead, forsaking tradition for pragmatism

With no fuel for cremations, some Japanese families were forced to bury their dead, forsaking tradition for pragmatism

Bereaved family members of victims of the earthquake and tsunami open the lids of coffins before burying them at a temporary mass grave site in Higashi Matsushima, northern Japan. -- PHOTO: REUTERS HIGASHIMATSUSHIMA (Japan) - CROWS cawed overhead as tsunami survivors in devastated towns along Japan's north-east coast buried their dead in makeshift graves en masse on Wednesday as workers at Fukushima's overheated nuclear plant struggled to cool down the crippled facility. With supplies of fuel and ice dwindling, officials have abandoned cremation in favour of quick, simple burials in a show of pragmatism over tradition. Some are buried in bare plywood caskets and others in blue plastic tarps, with no time to build proper coffins. The bodies will be dug up and cremated once crematoriums catch up with the glut, officials assured the families. In Higashimatsushima in Miyagi pr...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/Asia/Story/STISt...

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