Background for introductionKesennuma City is located on the Pacific coast in the northern east part of Miyagi prefecture and includes Kesennuma Bay...
Disaster information system / Japan
Background for introduction
Kesennuma City is located on the Pacific coast in the northern east part of Miyagi prefecture and includes Kesennuma Bay that is developed in shipbuilding and marine product processing industry.
The most part of the city has geographical features characterized by sawtooth-shaped coast and residences are concentrated on small flatland along the coast.
Kesennuma City was suffered immense damage by the Tohoku earthquake on March 11, 2011.
Almost all areas of the city lost electric power and information communication means, and it was extremely difficult to seize the disaster situation in the city and the evacuation status of residents in the circumstances in which no one can move due to attack of tsunami.
Immediately after the disaster, "disaster information" will become one of the most important lifeline to protect their lives. Not only so, but it is important to collect precise disaster information to minimize damage by disaster and it is required to immediately and surely transmit disaster information to residents in order to secure evacuation time as long as possible
We have to assume various situations of recipients of information such as individual attributes of target resident such as "elderly" or "handicapped", land form and use states of lands, driving a car, sleeping, etc. and it is also required to cope with changes in the situation from immediately after the disaster to recovery period according to type of disaster.
Therefore, the problem was how to distribute disaster information not only by the conventional radio communication for disaster prevention and administration system but also by various information media.
Kesennuma City in Miyagi Prefecture introduced the disaster information distribution control system.
This actualized information distribution not only to the existing radio communication for disaster prevention administration system but also various information media including early warning email for hand-held terminals, FM radio broadcast, data broadcast on TV, Facebook, Twitter, digital signage, just by one operation.
It is also linked with "J-ALERT (Zenkoku Shunji Keiho System: Nationwide early warning system)" and now it is possible to provide information by automatic distribution.
In addition, by installing the nucleus part of the system in the data center, information distribution from a hand-held terminal is possible so that you can distribute information after moving to a place where the communication line is available even if the city hall is damaged and peripheral communication lines are troubled.
In addition, constant efforts to distribute familiar information to residents bore fruit, as a result, now it is possible to display tide level information in real-time and distribute weather information and notice from medical institutions on the digital signage display that is installed for disaster information in the parking lot on the top floor of Kesennuma Fish Market where many residents evacuated to when the Tohoku Earthquake occurred and the lobby of Kesennuma City Hospital.
From the person in charge
This introduced system is maintained based on "Demonstration experiments of diversification of disaster information distribution to residents" issued by the Fire and Disaster management Agency in 2012 and verified effectiveness of the system through demonstration experiments assuming a disaster equivalent to the Tohoku Earthquake.
Power supply countermeasures by solar power generation preparing against large scale and long time power outage, redundancy of distribution line preparing against communication trouble and information distribution via private wireless system are practically tested and confirmed their high disaster-resistant ability. Therefore, it is possible to distribute information by easy operation from safe environment while dealing with changes in various situations from a moment of disaster occurrence to recovery period.
We will keep on distributing familiar information to residents every day as information media commonly known.
For example, we are going to display tide level information in real-time for people who lives near the coastline and is concerning for flooding due to ground subsidence and distribute weather information and notice from medical institutions on the digital signage display that is installed for disaster information in the parking lot on the top floor of Kesennuma Fish Market and the lobby of Kesennuma City Hospital.
Even for people who doesn't have an ICT tool, we will work hard to make them conscious about places where they can get Information and make them feel interested in disaster prevention information.
We don't think that our task is over since the system is completed but this is rather the start point.
We seriously have to think about how we can deliver information to residents while recognizing situations of communication/broadcasting service and information media that continues to develop every day.
We, as personnels of municipal government, think that we have to extend an antenna to carefully listen to voice of residents especially elderly and handicapped people since they can easily be an information shortfall.