3/11 memorial museum opens in Miyagi Pref.

A new museum has opened in Miyagi Prefecture, northeastern Japan, to pass on the lessons learned from the massive March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

The memorial museum is located inside a park in Ishinomaki City. It opened on Sunday, about two months later than planned due to the coronavirus pandemic.

It is the first facility run by Miyagi Prefecture that features exhibits related to the disaster.

Governor Murai Yoshihiro said there are concerns that memories of the catastrophe may fade away, as other disasters have occurred across the country since then, and there is also a new threat posed by the pandemic.

Murai expressed hope that the museum will play a central role in passing on the memories to the future generations.

One of the museum's nine themes is the importance of evacuating to protect one's life. Visitors can see videos of the tsunami and listen to people's testimonies at a theater.

They can also watch interviews with story-tellers and videos, which provide information about organizations that are reconstructing the community.

Tashiro Koichi is a Miyagi prefectural government official in charge of reconstruction. He said he wants people to learn about the disaster, so such a tragedy will never happen again.

The museum is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., except on Mondays. It is also closed during the year-end and New Year's holidays. Admission is free.