In the wake of Friday’s massive earthquake in Japan, Castlegar reached out to its sister city, Embetsu.
City staff sent a message through translator Yuri Kutchera, who is involved with the Castlegar-Embetsu Educational Exchange Committee.
“Mayor Lawrence Chernoff, city council and the citizens of Castlegar would like to extend our sincere concern to the citizens of our Sister-City of Embetsu,” the message read.
“Embetsu and the rest of Japan are in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time in your country.”
Kutchera was told by an Embetsu council member that the impact felt from the earthquake was minimal, however in the city of Sapporo, located 250 kilometres to the south, buildings swayed.
The 8.9-magnitude earthquake hit Japan at 2:46 p.m. local time on Friday, starting 125 kilometres off the east coast.
Dozens of aftershocks and a major tsunami followed.
Hundreds of people have been confirmed killed and thousands more are still missing in dozens of cities and towns across the east coast of Japan. By Sunday the death toll estimate was revised to at least 10,000 and possibly higher.
Embetsu is located on the northwest coast of Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido.