Thursday, 18th August 2011
In General Japan News,
More than £50m handed in by Japanese citizens
Japanese citizens handed in more than £50 million of cash found in the rubble after the earthquake and tsunami that hit the country in March.
According to reports, more than 5,700 safes washed up on shore along the coasts and were taken to police stations by volunteers and rescue crews.
Among the contents were £20 million in cash, gold bars, antiques and other such valuable items.
Most of the money has successfully been returned to its owners, thanks to the fact that many contained personal documents containing names and addresses.
"In most cases, the keyholes on these safes were filled with mud," Koetsu Saiki, a member of the Miyagi Prefectural Police, said. "We had to start by cutting apart the metal doors with grinders and other tools."
"The fact that these safes were washed away meant the homes were washed away too."
ABC News reports that 20 per cent of the safes found in Miyagi turned out to be empty. One contained a crafted box containing a baby's umbilical chord, often kept in Japan as a memento of birth.
Written by Kimberley Homer