Queuing is becoming a way of life in Yamagata, like other cities across north-eastern Japan it is running short of food, water and fuel.
It takes over one hour to get to the door of the supermarket with no guarantees of finding much within it.
Despite aftershocks and fears of radiation leaks, the people are trying to establish some sort of normality. A local resident describes the situation:
“I don’t have gas, I don’t have kerosene for heat. I don’t have electricity. I don’t have anything at all in my home. To survive, all I can do is wait, no matter how long it takes.”
Then of course there is a queue to catch a bus home.
Yamagata is just 100 kilometres from the troubled Fukushima nuclear plant but it is outside the evacuation zone.
So a sports centre has been turned into a refuge for those forced to leave their homes near the plant.
But even here there is no fuel for heating, a blanket will have to do and to add to their troubles it has started snowing.