El Pasoan's First Hand Account of Quake in Japan


POSTED: Friday, March 11, 2011 - 10:32am

UPDATED: Friday, March 11, 2011 - 6:07pm

“We all hit the floor and people were screaming"

NewsChannel 9 is getting a first hand account of the earthquake in Japan from an El Pasoan who is stranded there and it's all caught on cell phone video.

Native El Pasoan Johnny Quezada shot the video inside the Narita International Airport near Tokyo, as the massive 8.9 earthquake hit. He spoke with us over the phone from Japan.

"Everyone just hit the floor. We all hit the floor and people were screaming," he said.

Quezada is a lieutenant in the Navy and was heading back from a military operation in South Korea. He was about to board a connecting flight back to the U.S. when the quake hit. While the airport is in the southern part of Japan, and the quake's epicenter is in the North, the quake's power still rattled the whole building.

“It just grabbed it like it was a hand and it was just shaking it."

Quezada's worst fear was that the building would collapse.

"I feel really luck and fortunate that this was a really good building. it was built to withstand earthquakes because believe me, when you felt the whole building shake like it was nothing. I mean it was really shaking."

After the shaking stopped, Quezada says the aftershocks started. Police evacuated everyone from the airport. Flights in and out were canceled. Quezada says he's experienced another earthquake in Japan 25 years ago but it didn't even compare to this one.

"It was by far the strongest and the scariest that's for sure."

Quezada plans to spend the night in the airport and hopefully catch a flight home to California tomorrow.

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