This paper focuses on information-related issues at 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake. It is vitally important to implement disaster risk management through utilizing information. This paper, firstly, identifies the information-related dysfunction, which is called “Information Vacuum” in the paper, at the Earthquake based on the literature review, and compares same kinds of dysfunction in the past disasters. Secondly, through discussion on disaster risk management, this paper proposes the importance of identifying “Information Vacuum” as the risk for the first step in disaster risk management, and the importance of risk assessment as well.
In the past, earthquake fire has caused serious damage to life and property in Japan, especially in residential areas with wooden houses. The use of inefficient fire extinction systems is considered to be the main reason behind the spread of fire in such areas. During an earthquake, the movement of the fire brigade is hindered by the damage to the road network and the disruption of water supply, which depends on water distribution facilities of cities. Therefore, a hydrant system that can be easily operated by general residents has to be developed. The authors have developed a water shield system (WSS) to protect wooden houses from fire and to gain sufficient time for evacuation and rescue. In this paper, a basic study is carried out on a primal planning of water distribution system for the WSS in Kiyomizu area.
To clarify the mechanism of how a crowd accident occurs, phenomena in a high-density crowd accumulation were analyzed based on videos of extra-high-density crowd accumulation, crowd disaster investigation committee's reports and observation of high-density crowd phenomena of large-scale events. When the crowd density reaches 8 persons per square meter or so, crowd shock waves of 20 cm to 60 cm will occur due to the fluctuating density and pressure distribution in the crowd. When the density reaches 10 persons per square meter or more, people feel a surge of panic because of a fear of being crushed, possibility of crowd disaster will be higher with complicated critical crowd shock waves.
The Kathmandu Valley in Nepal is one of the examples of earthquake vulnerable city in the world. The historical world heritage has continued to develop a city of urbanization as the center of politics, the economy and society. It is obvious that it will be a massive disaster in a case of an earthquake like the devastating earthquake in 1934. This paper focused on Community-Based Disaster Management (CBDM), especially an empirical study on utilization of risk assessment map through a community town-watching exercise and installation of awareness billboards in three targeted communities. This article provides an insight into CBDM related policies of the Government of Nepal, and effectiveness of community involvement for enhancing community-based disaster management.
The 2011 off the Pacific coast of Tohoku earthquake caused water supply outage of 2.2 million households in 187 cities and towns. This earthquake provoked several aspects on earthquake-following natural and social events to the water supply system; the destructive tsunami damage, the water supply outage due to damage to the large transmission pipeline, the long-term electric power outage, the serious liquefaction damage, and the evacuation due to radioactivity leak of the nuclear power plant. The multi-factors made the water supply restoration be delayed even though the seismic ground motion was moderate. This study attempts to clarify these factors based on the water pipeline damage and restoration period.
This paper provides evidences of how the grocery stores react to the Tohoku Great Earthquake disaster. In August 2011, a survey was conducted to identify the behavior of the grocery stores during the earthquake disaster in Miyagi Prefecture, Japan. They were asked about whether they suffered from the disaster or not, and how they provided foods to residences. Main findings of this study are the following: 1) although most of glocery stores suffered from earthquake, their response is quick and could provide food right after earthquake, 2) lack of gasoline and inaccesibility to the central market were main bottleneck for the glocery stores to open.
May 16, 2009 Japan's first domestic case of infection of Swine origin Influenza A/H1N1 was confirmed in Kobe. The important indirect effect to economic activities occurred such as a sharp decrease of the number of tourists. The aim of this paper is to examine a recovery process of the number of tourists and social responses. The first step of this paper investigates interrelationship among a decrease and recovery of the number of tourists and newspapers coverage. The second step is to analyze the countermeasure of free admission to tourist facilities in Kobe City.
Flaws in preparedness and disaster response by governmental agencies were suggested as one of the factors contributing to the damage caused by the 2011 Chao Phraya River flood. Through a field survey and interviews with relevant authorities, we were able to clarify the emergency response of the Thai government and Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) focusing on information sharing and coordination. First, the expansion process of the Chao Phraya River flood and its damage was summarized. Second, the emergency response situation of both the Thai government and BMA and the flood recovery system were investigated. Finally, challenges for improving disaster response in Thailand were discussed.
Because the furniture fixation as an indoor safety measure at the time of the earthquake has not been widely spread, this study investigated measures to promote furniture fixation. Four elderly citizens' homes were visited, each elderly was interviewed, indoor safety analyses were conducted, room safety measures were suggested, furniture fixations were implemented, and follow-up evaluations were conducted. From these four case studies, societal issues that prevented furniture fixation were explored. This study demonstrated procedures to decide which furniture to fixate and practical techniques to conduct furniture fixation in order to improve indoor safety. Finally policy directions for furniture fixation promotion were suggested.
We developed building response simulation software visualizing seismic wave data. The system can support various types of earthquake, and handle the data on GIS interface. It is running on web browser, application of smartphone, head mounted display, and multi screen projector. The purpose of this system is making user imaginative about earthquake disaster to practice mitigation activity.
In recent large-scale disasters, citizens have started using social media, such as Twitter and Facebook, for sharing information for cooperation. In order to use social media efficiently, it is necessary to understand and clarify following issues: characteristics, accuracy and limitation of information obtained by social media; characteristics of users consisting social media community; and response characteristics of social media community for answering requests of various disaster information. In this study, we collected and analyzed tweet log during the 2011 heavy snow disaster in San-in region of western Japan. Based on the results of analysis, we discussed the possibility of use of social media for information sharing among citizens and supporting emergency response.
The 2011 off the Pacific coast of Tohoku Earthquake triggered liquefaction of soil in wide areas. In particular, a number of damaged houses were found in the land reclamation areas of the Kanto retion. Some residents living in houses tilted by liqufaction complained of health disorders. We report the result of questionnaire survey of residents in Mihama Ward, Chiba City, about the characteristics of their house, earthquake damage, health disturbances, and so on. Based on the survey data, we construct probability models of health disturbance with respect to house tilt angle investigated by the local government for the certificate of damage. The probability of health disturbance exceeded 50% when the tilt angle was larger than approximately 0.013 rad.
Managing disaster risks with low probability and high consequences is one of the big challenges for the Japanese disaster management policy. In this paper, a questionnaire survey on disaster management policy for sustainable disaster management was conducted from the perspective of intergenerational justice. The conclusions of this analysis are as follows. The elderly tend to pass the burden of such a large disaster reduction projects on the future generations. Those who have their descendants are not willing to do it.These fact imply that most of the Japanese citizens's preference on disaster management policy is selfish, not necessarily regarding the future generations into considerations.