The UN says about 60 international search and rescue teams are on alert to assist Japan.
One third of all New Zealand search specialists - a 48 strong team - are either already there or on their way this morning, a measure that recognises the support Japan gave this country after the Christchurch quake.
And Japan's own 120 member team that's been working here has flown back, straight into their own disaster zones.
Barack Obama says he's heartbroken by the devastation - a US aircraft carrier is on standby off the coast of Japan to provide logistical support.
It will refuel Japanese military helicopters and help transport its troops to affected areas.
The US is also sending a 144-strong rescue team and nuclear experts.
Australia has offered self contained field hospitals and disaster victim identification teams.
- Newstalk ZB