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Google Street View Car: Google Not Shying Away from Japan Nuclear Zone

Google Street View Car: A couple years back, Japan was hit by one of the worst nuclear disasters of all time. After the event, more than 20,000 residents of Namie were forced to leave town. While this doesn’t sound like anything to do with Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) or the internet in general, the search engine giant recently made news in this area.

Google is one of the hedge fund industry’s most popular stock picks, and it’s always important to pay attention to the smart money (see just why here).

According to a report by ABC News, Google is hoping to do its part in bringing people back to the area.

Here is the plan:

“The tech giant began today the process of digitally mapping neighborhoods closest to the nuclear plant, dispatching its street view car to Namie for the first time. With a specialized camera mounted atop its vehicle, Google drove through the empty town, steering around collapsed homes and cracked roads to capture a 360 view of the damage.”

Google Inc (GOOG)ABC News had the privilege of riding along with the Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) car, getting an inside look at how the process works and what the company is hoping to achieve.

According to product manager Kei Kawai, the process is expected to be complete within a couple of weeks, with the full street view map of Namie hitting the internet within a few months.

Kawai added the following:

“There’s nothing that compares to actually coming in and seeing [the damage] for yourself. But we can at least show what these places are like, to the people who [evacuated] the city, to the world.”

While the Google street view cars have been used in Japan in the past, it was actually Namie residents who were hoping the company would visit its town.

Here is what Namie Mayor Tamotsu Baba had to say:

“We still have to wear hazmat suits and get government approval, just to go home. How can we even begin to rebuild under circumstances such as that.”

While Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) can only do so much, it is good to see that they are helping.

Check back here for more updates on Google Street View Car.

DISCLOSURE: I have no positions in any stock mentioned.

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