• Kyodo

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The nine students of Uwajima Fisheries High School in Ehime Prefecture who survived the Feb. 9 sinking of the school’s training vessel, the Ehime Maru, are showing symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder, a public health official said Thursday.

Tatsuyuki Teramoto, head of the public health center in Uwajima, said all nine were found to “suffer symptoms of PTSD, albeit to different degrees.” Common symptoms are sleep disorders and a lack of concentration.

“There is a need to take measures with the cooperation of the school and medical institutions, since there are a number of students who apparently need treatment,” Teramoto said.

The study was conducted for three days from Monday by three PTSD experts who interviewed the students for about two hours each after the students filled out surveys.

The center will disclose detailed results of their studies on April 24 at the prefectural office.

Similar tests will be carried out on rescued crew members of the Ehime Maru, who have asked for an evaluation, the center said.

The 499-ton Ehime Maru sank off Hawaii after being hit by the submarine USS Greeneville, which was carrying out a rapid-surfacing operation for civilian guests on board. Nine Japanese, including four teenage students, were lost at sea. Twenty-six aboard the Ehime Maru were rescued.

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