Victims of Mt. Ontake Eruption Remembered 6 Years On
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Otaki, Nagano Pref., Sept. 27 (Jiji Press)--A memorial service was held on Sunday for dozens of victims of the eruption of Mount Ontake in central Japan six years ago.
The ceremony, held in a park in the village of Otaki in Nagano Prefecture, was attended by about 60 people, including bereaved relatives and Nagano Governor Shuichi Abe. A siren was sounded at 11:52 a.m. (2:52 a.m. GMT), the exact time when the eruption occurred on Sept. 27, 2014, and the participants observed a moment of silence.
This year, relatives of the victims and others were not encouraged to take part in the ceremony in light of the need to reduce the risk of novel coronavirus infection, and a speech by a representative of the relatives was canceled.
"I pledge to put full-fledged safety measures in place without forgetting the lessons of the disaster," Abe said in a speech at the ceremony, hosted by the municipal governments of Otaki and the town of Kiso, also Nagano. Both municipalities are located at the foot of the volcano. Bereaved relatives laid flowers at an altar set up at the site of the memorial service.
The eruption of the 3,067-meter volcano, which straddles Nagano and Gifu prefectures, claimed the lives of 58 people and left five others missing.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]