Boat caught in huge whirlpool after Japan's 8.9-magnitude earthquake

After the 8.9 earthquake hit Japan early this morning, and a tsunami washed into parts of the northeast region of Japan, helicopters captured this amazing footage of a whirlpool offshore. LIsten to the BBC's Humphrey Hawksley explain why.

Amazingly, there's a boat caught in it.

All we know is it looks like a scene from a Michael Bay movie.

For the rest of our coverage of the devastating earthquake in Japan, go here.

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DISCUSSION

toplessfc3sman-old
toplessFC3Sman

In the case of this boat caught in it, wouldn't it make sense to try to drive in the direction of the rotation to get up enough speed to be able to break out of the suction towards the center, in the same way that satellites & space vehicles use planets' "gravity wells" to help them build up momentum & break free of the planet's gravity/gain speed to head out? It seems like fighting it would just keep you in the same place relative to the rotation, but you'd get slowly dragged into the center