Early Warnings Work Somewhat for People Hit by Kumamoto Quakes: Study (News)


Tokyo, April 1 (Jiji Press)—Despite a delay, an early warning of the first of a series of strong earthquakes that hit Kumamoto Prefecture in southwestern Japan last year helped some local residents prepare for the subsequent shakes, a Japan Metrological Agency survey revealed Saturday.

On April 14 last year, the central Kumamoto region was rocked by a powerful earthquake with the highest intensity reading on the 7-point Japanese scale, the first of the two quakes to hit that intensity in the quake series.

Although the agency's early warning of the first quake failed to reach residents in areas near the epicenter in advance, 40% of 400 survey respondents in these areas said the warning made them understand what they experienced was an earthquake and get ready for subsequent events, the agency found.

Also according to the survey results, over 10% of the 400 people were able to take actions to protect themselves and nearly 10% were able to protect their families and other people close to them thanks to the warning.

The agency conducted the online survey from February through early March on about 1,900 adults who were in areas hit by shakes of at least intensity lower 5 in Kumamoto and other prefectures in the Kyūshū region, as well as in Ehime Prefecture of the Shikoku region, east of Kyūshū, when the strongest quakes occurred.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

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