Japan Earthquake, Tsunami: Moments of Destruction

VIDEO: Boats and cars smashed like matchsticks by tsunami wave in the city of Miyako.
ABC News

It was Friday, March 11, 2011 when a 9.0 magnitude earthquake rattled off the coast of Japan. The most powerful known earthquake to hit the island nation triggered a series of tsunamis. Buildings shook and toppled. Entire villages were washed away. In telling the story, it was civilians and journalists who picked up their cameras and captured moments that resulted in nearly 20,000 people dead and the most expensive natural disaster in world history.

VIDEO: Surging waters sweep vehicles under a road bridge in Miyagi Prefecture, Japan.
ABC News
River of Cars

Surging waters sweep vehicles under a road bridge in Miyagi prefecture, Japan.

VIDEO: Boats and cars smashed like matchsticks by tsunami wave in the city of Miyako.
ABC News
Disappearing Highway

Boats and cars are smashed like matchsticks by the tsunami wave in the city of Miyako.

VIDEO: The powerful tsunami engulfs farms and homes in Sendai, Japan.
ABC News
Tsunami Strikes

The powerful tsunami engulfs farms and homes in Sendai, Japan.

VIDEO: Residents in Miyagi Prefecture run as debris falls from buildings.
ABC News
Danger From Above

Residents in Miyagi prefecture run as debris falls from buildings.

VIDEO: A frightened man captures the 8.9 magnitude earthquake in Miyagi, Japan.
ABC News
Chaos at Home

A frightened man captures the 9.0 magnitude earthquake in Miyagi, Japan.

VIDEO: This amateur footage captures the moment the wave strikes Sendai Airport.
ABC News
Runway Underwater

This amateur footage captures the moment the wave strikes Sendai Airport.

VIDEO: Raw footage from Japan captures the tsunami hitting a town in Miyagi.
ABC News
Tsunami Swallows Town

Raw footage from Japan captures the tsunami hitting a town in Miyagi prefecture.

VIDEO: Onlookers scream as tsunami rips through town of Minamisanriku.
ABC News
Vanishing Village

Onlookers scream as the tsunami rips through the town of Minamisanriku.

VIDEO: Watch as the powerful wave breaches floodgates, washing away a car.
ABC News
Tsunami Breaches Floodgates

The tsunami generates a powerful wave that breaches floodgates, washing away a car.

VIDEO: Amateur video shows 8.9 magnitude earthquake's effect at a grocery store.
ABC News
Supermarket Shakes

Amateur video shows the 9.0 magnitude earthquake's effect at a grocery store.

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