American Citizen Services
- The U.S. Department of State warns U.S citizens of
the deteriorating situation at the Fukushima Daiichi
Nuclear Power Plant. The United States Nuclear
Regulatory Commission (NRC) recommends that U.S.
citizens who live within 50 miles (80 km) of the
Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant evacuate the area
or take shelter indoors if safe evacuation is not
practical. The State Department strongly urges U.S.
citizens to defer travel to Japan at this time and those
in Japan should consider departing. On March 16, 2011,
the Department of State authorized the voluntary
departure from Japan of eligible family members of U.S.
government personnel in Tokyo, Nagoya, and Yokohama.
This Travel Warning replaces the Travel Alert dated
March 13, 2011.
- In response to the deteriorating situation at the
Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, the United States
Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), the Department of
Energy, and other technical experts in the U.S.
Government have reviewed the scientific and technical
information they have collected from assets in country,
as well as what the Government of Japan has
disseminated. Consistent with the NRC guidelines that
would apply to such a situation in the United States, we
are recommending, as a precaution, that U.S. citizens
who live within 50 miles (80 km) of the
Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant evacuate the area
or to take shelter indoors if safe evacuation is not
- There are numerous factors in the aftermath of the
earthquake and tsunami, including weather, wind
direction, and speed, and the nature of the reactor
problem that affect the risk of radioactive
contamination within this 50-mile (80-km) radius
or the possibility of lower-level radioactive materials
reaching greater distances. For the latest U.S.
Government information on the situation in Japan, please
go to travel.state.gov. Information about
nuclear radiation exposure risks can be obtained from
the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and from the Centers for Disease Control.
- As a result of this assessment, the State Department
has authorized the voluntary departure from Japan of
eligible family members of U.S. government personnel
assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo, the U.S.
Consulate in Nagoya, and the Foreign Service Institute
Field School in Yokohama. U.S. citizens should defer
all travel to the evacuation zone around Fukushima
Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, areas affected by the
earthquake and tsunami and tourism and non-essential
travel to the rest of Japan at this time.
- Commercial flights have resumed at all airports that
were closed by the earthquake, except Sendai Airport,
and commercial seats are available at the time of this
posting. In Tokyo, most public transportation including
trains and subways are operating. Many roads have been
damaged in the Tokyo area and in northern Japan,
particularly in the Miyagi prefecture where government
checkpoints have been established on damaged roadways.
In Iwate Prefecture, toll road highways are restricted
to emergency vehicles only.
- The Department of State is working to assist U.S.
citizens to depart from affected areas. U.S. citizens
in Tokyo should review our Japan Earthquake/Pacific
Tsunami webpage at travel.state.gov for updated
- Hardships caused by the March 11 earthquake and
tsunami continue to cause severe difficulties for people
in the areas affected by the disaster. Temporary
shortages of water and food supplies may occur in
affected areas of Japan due to power and transportation
disruptions. Telephone services have also been
disrupted in affected areas; where possible, you may be
able to contact family members using text message or
social media such as Facebook or Twitter.
- Rolling power outages continue in the Tokyo
Metropolitan area and areas in northeast Japan affected
by the earthquake and tsunami. The Tokyo Electric Power
Company reports that three-hour outages may occur in
various regions, including Tokyo. Please monitor the
Tokyo Electric Power Company website and local news
media for specific information and schedules for the
planned outages. Radio stations in the Tokyo area that
have emergency information in English include the U.S.
Armed Forces station at 810AM and InterFM (76.1FM).
- Strong aftershocks are likely for weeks following
a massive earthquake such as this one. The American
Red Cross recommends that in the event of
aftershocks, persons should move to open spaces away
from walls, windows, buildings, and other structures
that may collapse, and should be alert to the danger
of falling debris. If you are indoors, DROP, COVER,
AND HOLD ON: If possible, seek cover under a sturdy
desk or table, hold on, and protect your eyes by
pressing your face against your arm. If there is no
table or desk nearby, sit on the floor against an
interior wall away from windows, bookcases or tall
furniture that could fall on you. Avoid damaged
buildings and downed power lines. Great care should
be used with matches, lighters, candles, or any open
flame due to the possibility of disrupted gas lines.
- Due to the continuing possibility of strong
aftershocks, Japan remains at risk for further
tsunamis. Japanese authorities have issued a warning
for people to stay away from low-lying coastal areas.
If a tsunami alert is issued by Japanese authorities,
evacuate immediately to higher ground. Further
information about what you can do if a tsunami occurs
can be found at the National Weather Service's
TsunamiReady website, and the
International Tsunami Information Center's website. Current tsunami alerts
can be found at the Japan Meteorological Agency website, and the
website of the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.
- The U.S. Embassy continues to deploy consular
assistance teams where needed; these teams are actively
working with our taskforce and local authorities to
locate U.S. citizens, visit shelters and assistance
centers, and help U.S. citizens identify public and
commercial transportation options away from affected
areas U.S. citizens requiring emergency consular
assistance should contact the Department of State at
JapanEmergencyUSC@state.gov or through the emergency contact numbers below. U.S. citizens in Japan should
contact family and friends in the United States to
confirm their well-being at the earliest opportunity.
Where internet and telephone services are not available,
it may be possible to contact people using SMS (Cell
text message) or other forms of social media such as
Twitter and Facebook.
- U.S. citizens in Japan are encouraged to enroll in
the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at https://travelregistration.state.gov. U.S. citizens
without internet access may enroll directly at the U.S.
Embassy or U.S. Consulates. By enrolling, U.S. citizens
make it easier for the Embassy/Consulates to contact
them in case of emergency.
- Updated information on travel and security in Japan
may be obtained from the Department of State by calling
1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada
or, for callers outside the United States and Canada, a
regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. For further
information, please consult the Country Specific
Information for Japan, as well as the Worldwide Caution,
which can be found at travel.state.gov.