Citizen and Government Collaboration in Addressing Natural Disasters in Japan

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Natural hazards are inevitable indeed. Even during this time of pandemic.Aa massive 7.3 magnitude earthquake has jolted the northeastern. Coast of Japan leaving 150 injured people last February 13, 2021. Considering it to be an aftershock of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake as it happened weeks before its 10° anniversary.

The 7.3 magnitude earthquake has caused widespread blackouts, which affected 950, 000 households. And displaced around 240 people in Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures from their homes. It also logged Upper 6 in some parts of Fukushima on the Japanese Intensity Scale which peaks at 7. Nearby regions have intensities lower. Than 6 as strength of the earthquake is perceived higher on the area where the epicenter is located.

Following the quake, the government has made its initial responses in spite of the aftershocks. By dispatching staff to gather information. About the scope of the damage and facilitate rehabilitation and recovery efforts in the affected areas. This implies that the country’s coping capacities to manage promptly the impacts contributes significantly in helping affected municipalities regain their state prior to the event.

According to Japan Meteorological Agency, the epicenter of the earthquake was off the coast of Fukushima prefecture at a depth of 36 miles. Even though the agency did not issue a tsunami warning. People in the area are still advised to evacuate to a higher place for their own safety since they are exposed to multiple hazards, the active faults apparently. And the possibility of a tsunami that may strike. But despite being listed in the World Risk Index 2020 as 10 most exposed country to disasters, Japan has obtained zero fatality rate in the recent quake. It has just proven that no matter how high the possibility of an area to be exposed to various hazards, as long as they have the sufficient means to modify buildings, structures and awareness of people, it can lessen the adverse impacts of the disaster to them or in other words, it is possible to be exposed but not vulnerable.

Japan is undeniably well-equipped to cope with natural hazards. Technological innovations in the country particularly in base vibration technology continue to advance to ensure the high-rise buildings and structures such as train stations are earthquake-proof. In the recent years, the country has also strengthened its dissemination of information in multiple languages since people cannot take actions during the onslaught of a disaster unless they have access to credible news and information. Aside from that, Japan has taken preventive measures in training its citizens regularly from just kindergarten age in survival drills. The collaborative efforts, discipline and awareness of citizens while cooperating with the government serves a great role in maintaining the country’s resiliency.

Taking everything into account, Japan has proved that in spite of being a hazard-prone country, building capacities and reducing vulnerability is not impossible if government and the citizens have the same goal of reducing risks and will work in collaboration in achieving this. No matter what natural hazards or disasters they may encounter, as long as the whole nation unites, they will always have the ability to bounce back from adversity.

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Citizen and Government Collaboration in Addressing Natural Disasters in Japan. (2023, May 18). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/citizen-and-government-collaboration-in-addressing-natural-disasters-in-japan/

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