Japan's east coast cities at "high risk" of strong earthquakes in next 30 years

Japan's east coast cities at "high risk" of strong earthquakes in next 30 years | Insurance Business Asia

Japan's east coast cities at "high risk" of strong earthquakes in next 30 years

Tokyo and other densely-populated areas in the east coast of Japan are at “high risk” of experiencing strong earthquakes in the next 30 years, according to a recently released government map.

In a report by national public broadcaster NHK, the annual map showed high risks of a Japan intensity 7 quake in areas surrounding Nagoya, Osaka, and Tokyo. A significant rise in risk was also revealed in the eastern portion of the northern island Hokkaido.

For cities within the Tokyo metropolitan area, the probability stood at 85% for Chiba, 82% for Yokohama, and 81% for Mito. Meanwhile, risk for Osaka was at 56% while that of Nagoya was 46%.

The Osaka area recently suffered a major earthquake last June. The tremor registered a lower 6 on the Japan scale and struck right during the peak of rush hour. Nearly 7,000 homes were damaged – including three that were completely destroyed, according to The Mainichi, a national daily. The government said five people lost their lives, and another 417 were injured.

The most powerful earthquake ever recorded to hit Japan happened in 2011, when a maximum intensity 7 tremor struck in waters off the eastern coast of the country’s Tohoku region in the northeast, which subsequently led to a tsunami. Munich Re estimates the event caused just over US$200 billion in losses, of which less than 25% was insured.

 

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