The NET119 Emergency Report System for people with hearing and speaking disabilities has been introduced in some fire departments in the central Japan prefecture of Niigata. It enables people to make emergency reports via the internet using smartphones or other devices and their location information is instantly sent to fire stations, leading to quick dispatches.
Disabled people accounted for 24.6 percent of total “disaster-related deaths” in the northeastern prefectures of Fukushima, Iwate and Miyagi, far above their 7 percent representation among the population as a whole estimated by the health ministry.
Around 60 percent of local government buildings across Japan were not equipped with emergency power supplies lasting 72 hours, a crucial time frame in saving human lives during times of disaster, the Fire and Disaster Management Agency said Thursday.
“The designation is made for extraordinary and very severe disasters that destroy or damage a great number of houses and disrupt transport and vital services in wide areas so that impacts on afflicted individuals and businesses are minimized.”