When was the last time you watched your whole town get engulfed by waves as your neighbors scramble to safety? Never, you say? Then live vicariously — in the video below, Japanese residents make a terrifyingly narrow escape from a tsunami wave as it swallows a town whole. The clip shows just a tiny taste of the horror the country faced after last month’s massive quake.

To support relief efforts, donate to the American Red Cross. Meanwhile, hold on tight: this video is a doozy.

This video was published to YouTube on April 11, 2011.