By on March 19, 2011

This driver had the bad luck of being on a coastal road in Japan when the tsunami hit. He had the good luck to make it through alive. And he had the amazing luck to have a video camera going while it happened, capturing the tsunami crashing into road and car.

The driver says he had no choice but to keep going: “When I turned the corner I could see the wall of water. At that moment I could do nothing else but keep driving,” London’s Telegraph quotes him.

“Water came up and the car was floating in the water. I was panicked, the water was probably two meters high. If I came out of the car I thought I would be caught in the water as well so I thought I would wait until it had come down.”

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15 Comments on “What’s It Like To Drive Through A Tsunami?...”

  • avatar

    OK, so hopefully one is driving something like a Touareg, with triple door seals, one has all windows and sunroof closed.
    What else can one do?  Make sure the forced recirc button is on? (there is also an automatic recirc button, but better not rely on that one at this point, uh?)  Remove seat belts?   Turn off all electrics, but leave engine running?

  • avatar

    I’d think turn the engine off, and if you’re luckier than anyone deserves, it won’t hydrolock and you MAY be able to drive.  Probably, though, you won’t be fast enough, and even if the engine is not destroyed, the electronics will be fried.  Time to walk.  Lucky he wasn’t swept out to see, too.

  • avatar

    That’s all the way in Chiba, not anywhere near the epicenter of the earthquake.  I doubt that he would be alive if he was closer.

  • avatar

    Translation by your notorious neighborhood Old Coot;
    Multiple “four letter words” interspersed with sundry not-fit-for-mixed-company two- and three-letter words with an admixture of multi-syllable not-safe-for-work exclamations comprised of various combinations of the two and above letter words resulting in a comprehendable whole.
    Thou art welcome.

  • avatar

    What a lucky man. Its fortunate that car floated as well as an old VW Bug. Amazing video.

  • avatar

    From :22 to :29 made me think he was about to “Taste The Rainbow”!

  • avatar

    “While other car blogs interrupt their reporting to show gratuitous pictures from the massive earthquake in Japan, TTAC stays on topic. Even in this confused state, there are better sources for real-time information on the catastrophe in Japan than armchair car bloggers.” – Bertil Schmitt
    Just sayin’

    • 0 avatar

      Yes, but this is on topic because this guy would have been able continue on his journey uninterrupted if only those selfish, greedy car manufacturers had thought to put tsunami protection in their vehicles rather than skimping to increase profits.
      If Ray LaHood can make us all have back-up cameras because a few distracted soccer moms each year run over their kids, and force us to have explosives a few inches from our faces because some rednecks still refuse to buckle up, then you bet he’ll be able to mandate automated inflatable buoyancy devices for all so that no little innocent children again get washed away when a 9.0 offshore earthquake strikes within 200 miles and you just happen to be driving along a sea-level coastal road.

    • 0 avatar

      [email protected],
      So are you saying that everyone who refuses to buckle up is a “redneck”, or that all “rednecks” refuse to buckle up? And if someone in the state of Massachusetts doesn’t buckle up then he is a “redneck” also? Just trying to understand what you are getting at here.

    • 0 avatar

      @[email protected],
      What I am saying is that just because there is a car in the video doesn’t necessarily make this a car video and that when you make grandiose blanket statements taking a swipe at other websites for their lack of focus, sometimes it comes back to bite you in the arse.

    • 0 avatar

      @windsworth; There was recently an article about Ford getting sued because two unbelted drunk guys got killed when they crashed their truck and the mom blamed Ford for not using tempered glass, and another about the DOT mandating back-up cameras. I’m not saying all rednecks are unbelted or all unbelted people are rednecks or all soccer moms are inattentive, I’m saying there are sometimes a few accidents that happen that cause a policy change that affects us all.
      @jimal; I agree with you, but the conversation had drifted to what would be the best vehicle to survive such an event and my reply was meant to be a sarcastic continuation of that.

  • avatar

    Tough.And under all circumstances keep the camera running!

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