Japan Trying to Spread Use of "Manhole Toilets" in Disasters

Politics Lifestyle

Tokyo, Oct. 26 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese government is trying to spread the use of "manhole toilets," or makeshift toilets in tents placed directly over open manholes, in times of disasters.

The infrastructure ministry and the Cabinet Office recently sent out their first notices urging municipalities to consider introducing such emergency facilities.

Manhole toilets are sanitary as excrement falls directly into the sewage system and is washed away. They are also accessible to wheelchair users as they are set up on the ground.

But manhole toilets have yet to be adopted nationwide, as sewage pipes need to be extended in order for them to be used at evacuation centers.

"People with disabilities find it difficult to stay in evacuation centers," said Eiko Kimura, a House of Councillors lawmaker with a severe disability of the opposition party Reiwa Shinsengumi. "A major reason is the toilets."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press