THE WRAP: The world reacts to Japan disasters

Michael Carroll
18 Mar 2011

All eyes are on Japan this week, after the country’s north east coast was devastated by a tsunami following an offshore earthquake

The quake damaged vital subsea cables and knocked out mobile networks, resulting in massive difficulties for search and rescue teams, and people trying to locate relatives or friends.

NTT DoCoMo reported that nearly 2,500 of its base stations were down by early Tuesday, as all three mobile carriers reported outages and severe congestion across all networks.

Global bodies including the ITU rushed to deploy satellite phones to aid the rescue effort, while carriers sent out portable base stations and generators in a bid to restore services.

Tech firms rallied round the stricken country. Amazon and Google set up Red Cross donation functions on their website, while the search giant set up a people finder service similar to operator’s own disaster message boards.

Nokia made a donation to the Red Cross, and pledged to match any donation made by employees to the charity’s disaster fund.

While stock markets got jittery about potential disruptions to consumer electronics manufacturer’s supply chains, European tech stocks bore up well in Monday trading.

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