21 Apr '11, 6pm

Underwater robots join search for Japan tsunami victims

TOKYO: Two underwater robots operated by a joint US-Japanese team have searched a bay in northeast Japan for bodies of victims swept away by a tsunami nearly six weeks ago, officials said on Thursday. Although the Micro-ROV robots failed to spot any corpses in the search on Tuesday and Wednesday, they found that the fishing port of Minami Sanrikucho was free of major underwater obstacles and could be reopened soon. "The water in the port is still so murky that it is very difficult to inspect visually," said local fishery promotion official Akihiro Dazai. "The robots' sonar and video cameras could check what it was like underwater," he told AFP by telephone. "We've confirmed that fishing boats can reach unloading berths without a major hindrance." The backwash of the tsunami, which followed a 9.0-magnitude quake on March 11, was found to have dragged steel and lumber frames...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific/vi...

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