Disaster drills to prepare for huge earthquakes, based for the first time on a gigantic Nankai Trough quake scenario, were conducted across the nation Sunday, as Sept. 1 is Disaster Prevention Day.
The government conducted for the first time a comprehensive disaster drill based on the premise that the predicted Nankai Trough quake occurred. An emergency antidisaster headquarters chaired by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was set up and simulated making decisions on how to cope with the disaster.
The drills started at 6:05 a.m. based on a scenario in which a magnitude-9.1 earthquake occurred with the epicenter located somewhere in the trough stretching from off Shizuoka Prefecture down to the Hyuganada Sea off Miyazaki Prefecture, with shocks reaching the top of the Japanese intensity scale of 7 occurring in wide areas from western Shizuoka Prefecture to northern plains of Miyazaki Prefecture.
On his first day in his new job, industry minister Yoichi Miyazawa said Tuesday he will soon be ready to visit communities near nuclear power plants, apparently pledging to maintain the momentum for reactor restarts. (Japan Times)
Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto met with the head of an anti-Korean group on Monday as he considers cracking down on hate speech rallies in the western Japan city, but they ended up having a shouting match in which they more or less just insulted each other. (Kyodo)
Osaka Prefectural Police on Friday arrested two male suspects for allegedly dumping a large quantity of adult video (AV) material inside a park in Nishinari Ward, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Oct. 17). (Tokyo Reporter)
Empress Michiko celebrated her 80th birthday on Monday. In a statement distributed to media by the Imperial Household Agency, the empress said she hoped the world could find peace ahead of the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II next year. (Japan Today)
The Nagano prefectural government's disaster response headquarters said Thursday it has decided to end its search this year for missing hikers on Mt. Ontake due to the growing risk of secondary accidents. (The Japan News)