What to do in the event
of an earthquake

In the event of an earthquake, read the following and safely evacuate.
See "Human perceptions and reactions" for information on earthquake severity.

What to do in an earthquake

Move somewhere safe

  • If you feel a tremor or receive an Earthquake Early Warning, prioritize the need to move somewhere safe.
Earthquake Early Warning
An Earthquake Early Warning is issued as soon as an earthquake is detected to provide the public in each area with information on the expected strength and arrival time of tremors, and seismic intensity, as quickly as possible. Warnings are issued through TV and radio broadcasts, as well as mobile phones.
  • Move under a sturdy table or any other place where there is no danger of items falling, collapsing, or moving toward you. Stay there until the tremors subside.
What to do immediately after an earthquake
Human perceptions and reactions
Seismic intensity Human perceptions and reactions
4 Most people will be startled. Most people walking will feel the tremor. Most people sleeping will be woken.
5
Lower
Most people will be frightened and feel the need to hold onto something.
5
Upper
Most people will find it hard to move and struggle to walk without holding onto something.
6
Lower
It becomes difficult to stand.
6
Upper
It becomes impossible to stand or move without crawling. People become overwhelmed by the tremor, cannot move, and may be thrown through the air.
7

*Taken from "Tables explaining the JMA Seismic Intensity Scale" on the Japan Meteorological Agency website

What to do immediately after an earthquake

After the tremors subside, check for any fires and extinguish them if you can

  • If you were in the middle of using an open flame, wait until the tremors subside, and then calmly put it out.
  • If a fire does break out, stay calm and work to extinguish it.

Beware of any broken glass on the floor or anything falling from above

  • Be careful of any fallen or collapsed furniture or broken glass indoors.
  • Don't rush outside as tiles, windows, and signs may fall from above.

Prepare to evacuate by opening windows and doors and securing an exit route

  • Secure an exit route so that you can evacuate when the tremors subside.
  • Beware of any broken glass, etc., and watch your step.

When outside, avoid gates, walls and fences

  • If you feel a tremor when outside, avoid approaching concrete-block walls

Quickly and safely evacuate when there is danger of fire or a tsunami

  • If there is impending risk of a large fire nearby and you feel in danger, temporarily evacuate to an evacuation shelter.
  • In coastal areas, if you feel a large tremor or receive a tsunami warning, quickly evacuate to a safe space on high ground.
What to do immediately after an earthquake

What to do after an earthquake

Check for the relevant information on the radio or on TV, and act accordingly

  • Check for correct, accurate information on the radio or on TV, from your local municipalities, from the local fire station, etc.

Check the safety of your family and your neighbors

  • After confirming that your family is safe, check your neighbors.

Help with rescue efforts nearby and provide first aid

  • Work with others in the community to rescue and provide first aid to those trapped under destroyed houses or fallen furniture, etc.

Turn off electricity and gas before evacuating

  • When you need to evacuate, make sure to turn off the electricity and gas before you leave.
What to do after an earthquake

*Taken from "10 Points for Earthquake Safety" on the Tokyo Fire Department website

What to do in the event of a typhoon
or torrential rain

If you hear on the news or from weather information that a typhoon or torrential rain is approaching, stay clear of the sea, rivers, waterways, and other dangerous areas.

Double check to see whether you are prepared for a disaster.

Things to check on a daily basis

Things to check on a daily basis
  • Inspect your emergency evacuation supplies.
  • Take measures such as reinforcing parts of your house before the wind and rain get stronger.
  • Check the route to the evacuation shelter.
  • Regularly check for dangerous locations and evacuation shelters on a local hazard map.

Things to check immediately before evacuating

Things to check immediately before evacuating
  • Be aware of any landslide warnings, etc., when rain starts to fall.
  • If you feel in danger, or are advised to evacuate by the municipality, quickly but calmly evacuate.
  • Be sure to extinguish any fires before evacuating.
  • When evacuating, keep your belongings to a minimum and carry them on your back to keep both of your hands free.
  • Landslides and overflowing rivers can occur in an instant, and thus delayed evacuations could be life threatening. As adverse weather can make it difficult to travel, senior citizens and families with young children should consider evacuating voluntarily at an early stage.
  • Do not return home to pick up something you have forgotten as it could be extremely dangerous.
  • If it is a risk to travel to an evacuation shelter because of strong winds or floods, consider waiting in a safe space at home (in a second-floor room away from a cliff) or in a strong building nearby.

*Taken from "What can occur during torrential rains and typhoons" on the website of the Prime Minister of Japan and His Cabinet

5-Level Warning System (5-Level Warning System)

Here we have arranged information from local municipalities and the national and prefectural governments regarding floods and landslides into five levels.
This information should be used by residents when voluntarily evacuating.

Warning level 1 Be ready for a disaster. Early warning information (Issued by the Japan Meteorological Agency)
Warning level 2 Prepare to evacuate and use hazard maps and other information to confirm your evacuation route. Flood warning•Heavy rain warning, etc.(Issued by the Japan Meteorological Agency)
Warning level 3Senior citizens must evacuate Those who need time to evacuate, such as senior citizens, disabled persons, and infants, should evacuate with their carers/guardians.
Everyone else should prepare to evacuate.
Senior citizens should start to evacuate(Issued by local municipalities)
Warning level 4Everyone must evacuate Quickly evacuate to an evacuation shelter.
When it is a risk to travel to public evacuation shelters, move somewhere safer nearby or to a safer place inside your home.
Evacuation advisory•Evacuation order (Emergency)(Issued by local municipalities)Issued in each region when there is an emergency and/or when residents are repeatedly advised to evacuate
Warning level 5 A disaster has already occurred.
Take optimal measures to protect lives.
Disaster occurrence information (Issued by local municipalities) Information is issued to the extent possible when it is deemed that a disaster has occurred
  • Conditions may suddenly change, and so information will not necessarily be announced in order from warning levels 1–5.
  • For warning level 5, a disaster has already occurred, and a warning may not always be issued.
  • For warning levels 3 and 4, be sure to support your fellow residents and evacuate safely but surely.

*Taken from "Evacuation Advice" on the Disaster Preparedness Information page of the website of the Cabinet Office

Check locations of evacuation shelters
in advance

Be aware in advance of where you need to evacuate to when there is impending danger from a disaster.

Nishiharima Area Evacuation Shelter Information

Disaster preparedness app
and search tool

It is important to be prepared for disasters on a daily basis.
Use the websites and apps below to ensure you are thoroughly prepared.

Hyogo Emergency Net
Hyogo Emergency Net

Provides an array of information regarding weather warnings and disaster preparedness. Up to three localities can be registered in advance.

Hyogo Prefectural CG Hazard Maps
Hyogo Prefectural CG Hazard Maps

Learn about the dangers and evasive actions to take in the area you live, as well as flood depths, evacuation shelters, evacuation routes, and more.

Union of Kansai Governments
Union of Kansai Governments

Information about disaster preparedness across Kansai. Aims to provide safety and peace of mind to residents by improving disaster preparedness through cooperation throughout the entire Kansai region.

Living in Hyogo
Living in Hyogo

Information on daily life for foreign residents.Here you can talk to someone in your own language if you're having problems or concerns with your life, work, children, or anything else.