Monday, July 9, 2012

Japan: Experts fear that 400,000 people may die if quake strikes Nankai Trough at night

According to Wikipedia, the Nankai Trough is the near-surface extension of a zone of active seismicity that dips beneath South West Japan. It is located in waters off the Tokai region in central Japan to the Shikoku region in the west. According to the experts, should an earthquake occur in this region at night, as many as 400,000 people may die in one big swipe-out.

Kansai University professor Yoshiaki Kawata, who heads a government anti-disaster panel revealed this information in his speech in Konohana Ward, Osaka City. The panel also plans to publish its estimates on what to expect from such an occurrence, and this info should be available by next month. Apparently the number of deaths will cross 300,000 if the earthquake occurs at midnight.

Kawata’s hypothesis is based on the calculations of the March 11 earthquake last year. The estimated number of deaths would have crossed 63,000 if the earthquake occurred at midnight, this is because the number of people at home would have been three-times that of the number of people awake and outdoors during the day. The population of areas like Tokai, Kinki, Shikoku and Kyushu regions is estimated to be 47 million, around 6.3 times that of the population in areas affected by the March 2011 quake. Even if the earthquake occurs during the day, the findings predict that almost 120,000 will perish due to it. Almost 100 trillion to 150 trillion yen in financial damages and about 700 municipalities will get affected by the quake! source