After more than twenty-four hours since we last heard from them, Sea Shepherd Director of Investigations Scott West was able to call his wife Suzanne to report that he and the entire Sea Shepherd Cove Guardian crew are alive and unharmed.
They had to abandon their two cars in the devastated port city of Otsuchi where they spent the night on a hill. The entire town around them was destroyed. They walked out over scattered debris, roads that were completely wiped out, and walked past numerous dead bodies amidst piles of rubble. At one point yesterday they saw and heard a woman in the water screaming for help, but she was washed out to sea before they could do anything to rescue her.
The Cove Guardians went to Otsuchi to document the slaughter of Dall's Porpoise. Every year the fishermen slaughter over 20,000 of these gentle creatures. They had just filmed a fishing boat returning from a porpoise hunt when they saw the water in the harbor receding and they immediately headed for high ground. The time from the Earthquake to the Tsunami striking Otsuchi was about eight minutes.
The Cove Guardians were right in the midst of the most devastating Tsunami to ever hit Japan, and we are thankful they have all survived and are well.
Scott West was only able to send out this quick message, as his mobile phone was fading:
We are all 6 safe and out of Otsuchi. Now in Tono at hotel with no power, Internet, water, or food. Have IPhone until battery dead. -- Scott