Day_168 : Past Interview Records – PTWC (Pacific Tsunami Warning Center) in Hawaii (1)

Continue to the past New Orleans Interview Records, I would like to open the memo about the interview to PTWC. It was a great time and I learned a lot from the interviews.  So I would like to share the fact to let you know their works to tackle the tsunami disasters in the world.

PTWC is the core center for the tsunami warning well known to the world.

2008.2.26 (Tue.) at 1000 am
15 staff, director, deputy director
Information Technician, including nine scientists
16-hour shift on 8-4-4, homes are next to the center

The records from the interview survey are shown below.

■ Evacuation
There is no international standard in terminology. Terminology varies by country/region. The words sometimes make me confused. Also, in the past, it was two either evacuation nor no evacuation.

■ Warning Error
It is challenging to give a warning. There are errors in the original earthquake and the tide data. There is an error in the gauge also.
To judge them collect is too hard. So, it can be said that 99.99% is an error.

In Hawaii, only a quarter of evacuation was actually damaged in the past. It is not unusual that although there were evacuations, there were no damages at all.

■ Past data and warning judgment
Only use a few. Because how to put out the past data, equipment, etc.are hard to do. Which way is the numerical model used to determine if the earthquake becomes a tsunami is complicated. There are more things to do.

■ Relationship with other countries
The countries that are most focused on warning about tsunami in the Pacific are Japan, America, Australia, Chile, Canada, and Russia. Also, it is not possible to evaluate the inspection records of other countries. This should be noted.

■ At the time of the 2004 tsunami
Most of the records before the Indian Ocean Tsunami were reported hourly, so judge the event was tough. Every 15 minutes, now every 6 minutes is normal and very good.

■ Conditions for cancellation
Make a comprehensive decision. The problem of reflections adds to the complexity. Not only direct waves but also an indirect wave should be considered.

Related Books and info.

Day_83 : Tsunami – the words

Tsunami is the words coming from Japan

Day_156: Matsushiro Earthquake Center

I will update a column of the NIED e-mail magazine which I wrote a long time ago because the content is not faded with time. (I will do this step by step in Japanese and English) I will also add comments to update the situation.

Published April 5, 2010
NIED-DIL e-mail magazine: Matsushiro Earthquake Center

■ Matsushiro Earthquake Center ■

There is an organization called Matsushiro Earthquake Center in Matsushiro, Nagano Prefecture in Japan. The Center was established in February 1967 at the Japan Meteorological Agency in Matsushiro Town, Nagano Prefecture (now Nagano City) based on the Matsushiro Seismological Observatory which was established in 1947. The background of this establishment is that between August 3, 1965, and April 17, 1966, insensitive earthquakes, seismic intensities 5 and 4 were observed three times each and a total of 6,780 earthquakes were detected in the Matsushiro town area. This severe earthquake activity has become a major social problem.

It is famous that Mayor Nakamura at that time said that he wanted to learn and research more than things and money, and that was a starting point of the center. The center is also well known as the location which was planned to build the imperial general headquarter at the end of the second world war. Besides, It is known that the experience gained from the observation of the earthquake has dramatically influenced the progress of earthquake prediction and disaster countermeasures today.

The author is organizing the records of the discourse at the time with the cooperation of the Japan Meteorological Agency’s Earthquake Observatory (Matsushiro Seismological Observatory) as the Disaster Information Office. I am surprised at the fascinating records. The fact that Matsushiro city was working to build a disaster-resilient town in the wake of an earthquake throughout the city is lively communicated. For example, there was not only research on the earthquake itself but also research on the health status of students, including psychological aspects from nearby schools caused by a swarm. This was due to the cooperation of Matsushiro health centers and hospitals. It does not stop there. Members were active in the front lines of various fields at the time, such as landslide surveys caused by earthquakes and the impact on water supply facilities during earthquakes, reports from various perspectives.

I am sorry that the format etc. is still insufficient, but I am starting to release these records on the HP in hopes that you can see it in a provisional form. Please see if you have time.


Now you can not access, but you can ask NIED DIL to have information.

Published on April 5, 2010

Matsushiro Seismological Observatory

Day_154 : (In Japanese) 災害からの復興




Day_153 : Reported Death Numbers

I will update a column of the NIED e-mail magazine which I wrote a long time ago because the content is not faded with time. (I will do this step by step in Japanese and English) I will also add comments to update the situation.

Published February 4, 2010
NIED-DIL e-mail magazine: Reported fatalities due to disasters

January 12 There was a big earthquake in Haiti. The consequences are still a major social issue, but at an early stage, the President declared that the number of casualties reached 200,000.

At the time of the Hurricane Katrina disaster at the end of August 2005, the first report was 10,000 casualties. But, in the end, there was about 1,300. I felt that nationality, culture, and so on become apparent compared to Japan.

A typical case in Japan is the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake. I was living in Kyoto and worked in Kyoto City at that time. I remember that around 7 a.m., it was reported on T.V. that there were only a few deaths. As time went by, it increased to hundreds and thousands.

The U.S. tends to have a top-down and strategic way; on the other hand, Japan seeks bottom-up and accurate process to disclose the number. In the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, reported death tolls in affected countries fluctuated, but taking this into account is a way to understand the disasters which reflect the country’s situations, including social backgrounds, cultures, economies, and so on.

Regarding Haiti, the number of reported deaths increases with time. I pray that the number will not be so huge.

For example, the following World Vision website considers the current estimated death to be 250,000. In short, the first report ended up gaining some meaning.

2010 Haiti earthquake: Facts, FAQs, and how to help

Day_152 : (In Japanese) 災害による報告死者数











2010 Haiti earthquake: Facts, FAQs, and how to help

Day_143 : World Disaster Chronology 1996-1997

Date Place Disaster Type Situations
1996.01- US, East Cold Wave Over 200(DM) Snowstorm
1996.02.17 Indonesia, East (Irian Jaya) Submarine Earthquake M8.1~8.2, 170(DM) Tsunami to Pulau Biak
1996.04- Mongolia Bush Fire The worst bush fire in Mongolia’s  history.
1996.05- Bangladesh Tornado 1,000-1,500(DM) One of the worst tornado disaster in the world
1996.05- Tanzania Strong Wind Over 500(DM)
1996.05- Pakistan Heat Wave Over100(D)
1996.06- China Heavy rain, Flood Over 220(DM), Landslide
1996.06- China, South Heavy rain, Flood Over 1,700(D)
1996.07- China Typhoon, Flood Over500(DM)
1996.07- India Heavy rain, Flood Over750(DM)
1996.07- North Korea Heavy rain, Flood DM(several hundred), Estimated large-scale starving caused by two years successive floods.
1996.07- Nepal Heavy rain, Flood Over210(DM)
1996.09- Japan Typhoon, Flood 11(D), Injured 70 ,Destroyed 900, Inundated over12,000
1996.11- India Cyclone, Flood Over 2,000(DM)
1996.12- Malaysia Typhoon, Flood 200(DM)
1997.01- Madagascar Cyclone, Flood 100(DM)
1997.02- Peru Heavy rain, Floods, and Landslides Over380(DM)
1997.02.28 Iran, Northwest Inland Earthquake M5.5-6.1, 965-1,100 (DM) *
1997.05.10 Iran, East Inland Earthquake M6.8-7.3, 1,600(DM)*
1997.05- Bangladesh Typhoon, Flood Over500(DM)
1997.06- China, Sichuan Heavy rain, Flood, and Landslide 140(DM)
1997.07.09 Venezuela Inland Earthquake M6.9、Over76(DM)
1997.07- Germany/Poland, North Heavy rain, Flood 110(DM) Oder river flooding
1997.08- Japan Heavy rain, Flood 5(D),Inundated Over 14,000
1997.08- China Typhoon, Flood 140(DM)
1997.08- India, North Heavy rain, Flood, and Landslide 130-280(DM)
1997.08- India Tidal wave 400(DM)
1997.09- Japan Typhoon, Flood 12(D), Destroyed approx.200, Inundated over 16,000
1997.09- Pakistan Heavy rain, Flood Over 140(DM), Lahore
1997.10- Mexico Hurricane, Flood Over 400(DM)
1997.10- Somalia Heavy rain, Flood Over 1,700(D)
1997.11- Ecuador Heavy rain, Flood Over 140(DM)
1997.12- Peru Heavy rain, Flood Over 300(D)
1997.12- Brazil and others Forest fire Amazon rainforest conflagration
1997.12- Zambia Heavy rain, Flood Over 200(DM)
1998.02.04 Afghanistan, Northeast Inland Earthquake M5.9-6.1,  2,300(DM)
1998.03- Pakistan Heavy rain, Flood Over300(DM)
1998.03- India Tornado Over 200(DM)
1998.05.31 Afghanistan, Northeast Inland Earthquake M6.6-6.9, 4,000-5,000(DM)
1998.05- India Heat Wave Over 3,000(D)
1998.05- Italy Heavy rain, Flood 180-300(DM)
1998.06- India Typhoon, Flood 1,000(DM)
1998.06- Nepal Heavy rain, Flood Over 110(DM)
1998.06- China Heavy rain, Flood Over 4,200(DM) Yangtze river and other rivers floods, over 200 million (affected)
1998.07- US, South Heat Wave Over 170(DM)
1998.07- India/Bangladesh Heavy rain, Flood Over 3,000(DM) Ganges River flood
1998.07- Uzbekistan Heavy rain, Flood Over 700(DM), a dam was collapsed
1998.07.17 New Guinea, North Submarine Earthquake New Guinea Earthquake and Tsunami M7.1  2,800(DM)
1998.08- South Korea Heavy rain, Flood 250-330(DM)
1998.08- Japan Heavy rain, Flood 25(DM), Destroyed approx.480, Inundation over 13,000
1998.09- Japan Typhoon, Flood 18(DM), Injured 570, Destroyed approx.21,000, Inundation over 8,600, Typhoon No.7,8
1998.09- Japan Typhoon, Flood 9(D), Destroyed approx.100, Inundation over 17,000, Typhoon No.9
1998.09- Japan Typhoon, Flood 14(DM), Injured 60, Destroyed approx.700, Inundation over 12,000, Typhoon No.10
1998.09- Haiti Dominica Typhoon, Flood Over 500(DM), Hurricane George
1998.09- Mexico Heavy rain, Flood Over 1,400(DM)
1998.10- Nicaragua Volcano Over 1,600(DM) Mudslide
1998.11- Thailand Typhoon, Flood 100(DM)
1998.11.29 Eastern Indonesia (Serum Sea) Submarine Earthquake M7.7-8.3  40(DM) Tsunami

* Iran has a lot of earthquake disasters. The below can be referred.

Day_81 : Earthquake disasters in Asia (1) – Iran

This world disaster chronology is a draft version.  It will be combined with other years and polished later.

Day_142 : World Disaster Chronology-1994-1995


Date Place Disaster Type Situations
1994.01.17 US, Southeastern Inland Earthquake 1994 Northridge earthquake *
M6.8, 60(D), one of the costliest natural disasters of US history
1994.02.15 Indonesia, West (Sumatra Island) Inland Earthquake M6.6~7.0, Over 200(DM)
1994.05- Bangladesh Cyclone Over 170 (DM)
1994.05.13 Afghanistan Inland Earthquake M6.0, Over160(DM)
1994.06- India / Pakistan Heat Wave Over 400 (D)
1994.06- Ethiopia Drought Over 5,000(D), Food shortage
1994.06- China, Central eastern Heavy Rain, Flood Over 700(DM), A part of Shanghai was inundated
1994.06.02 Indonesia, South (Java Island) Submarine Earthquake M7.8、死不270以上、津波。
1994.06.06 Colombia, South Inland Earthquake M6.6, 300-800(DM), Debris flow
1994.06.09 Bolivia, Peru Deep-focus Earthquake 1994 Bolivia earthquake M8.2 10(D)
1994.07- Rwanda Heat Wave Over 10,000(D), combined with Civil War
1994.08.18 Algeria, North Inland Earthquake M5.7, Over 150(DM)
1994.10.04 Japan, Kunashiri Island Submarine Earthquake The 1994 Hokkaido Toho Oki Earthquake M8.2-8.3, 15(DM), Tsunami
1994.11- India South Cyclone 190(DM)
1994.11.14 The Philippines Inland Earthquake M7.1 Over70(DM) Tsunami
1994.11- Italy Heavy Rain, Flood Over 60(DM)
1994.11- Egypt Lightning 560(DM) Lightning damage to Oil facilities
1994.11- Haiti, Cuba Hurricane, Flood Over 700(DM)
1995.01.17 Japan Inland Earthquake The 1995 Great Hanshin Awaji Earthquake * M6.9~7.3 5,500~6,400(DM)
1995.03- Afghanistan Heavy Rain, Flood, Landslide Over 360(DM)
1995.04- Bangladesh Strong Wind 700(DM)
1995.05.27 Sakhalin, North Inland Earthquake The 1995 Neftegorsk earthquake,M7.1~7.5, Over 1,989(DM) Neftegorsk city was destroyed and vanished from the map after the disaster
1995.05- Brazil Heavy rain, Flood. Landslide Over 80(DM)
1995.05- China Heavy rain, Flood Over 1,100(DM), Yangtze river flood
1995.06- India, Pakistan Heat Wave Over 800(D)
1995.06- Japan Heavy rain, Flood 9(DM), Destroyed Approx.200, Inundated over15,000
1995.07- US Heat Wave Over 800(D)
1995.07- D.P.R.Korea Heavy rain, Flood Over 60(DM)
1995.07- Thailand Heavy rain, Flood Over 200(DM)
1995.08- Morocco Heavy rain, Flood Over 150(DM)
1995.9- The Philippines Heavy rain, Flood Over 540(DM)
1995.11- The Philippines Typhoon, Flood Over 780(DM)
1995.12-  Kazakhstan Cold Wave Over 100(DM) Snowstorm

D: The number of Death M: Missing number DM: The dead and missing number

Day_84 : Northridge and Kobe

Related articles across the web

Day_138 : Natural Disasters in Europe (1)

Natural disasters in Europe mainly consist of hydrological, meteorological, climatological, earthquake and volcano eruption disasters.

Figure   The Europe

Earthquake disasters mainly occur in the Aegean Sea, the south-western coast of Balkan Peninsula, and the southern part of Italy. Volcanoes are active in the central and southern parts of Italy, the southern Aegean Sea, and Iceland area.

Concerning hydrological, meteorological, and climatological disasters, heavy rain, and storm disasters are caused by a low  pressure in the Iceland area developed in a winter season. A cold atmospheric current coming from Arctic gain a warmer vapor stream from the Gulf Stream and develop the strong atmospheric depression in the area. This causes the strong winds and high tidal waves along the coastal areas of the North Sea.

Netherlands and England can be highlighted. Netherlands had storm surges in 1530 and 1570. The death toll were approximately 400,000(1530) and 70,000(1570) for each. The 1953 depression made 1800 death toll in 1953. This disaster reached to England also. England’s disasters were the 1703 Thames river flood and the 2003 Heatwave. The temperature was 8-10 over than an average year on August 2003.

With regard to earthquake disasters, Italy, Greece, and Portugal are the main countries to be affected.

The following past article explains the recent earthquake cases in Italy.

Day_131 : Italy-Recent earthquake and past earthquake disasters (2)

To be continued…..

Day_131 : Italy-Recent earthquake and past earthquake disasters (2)

CNN: (October 30)A powerful 6.6-magnitude earthquake rocked central Italy on Sunday morning, injuring at least 20 people, in the strongest tremor to hit the country in more than three decades. The earthquake follows tremors last week and comes on the heels of a devastating quake in August, which killed nearly 300 people and flattened entire villages.

Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC) still does not list this earthquake situation.This earthquake is severer than this August Earthquake(Day_107). Earthquakes in Italy happened mostly central and southern part of Italy around the

Day_107 : Italy-Recent earthquake and past earthquake disasters

Natural disaster trends are usually from human sufferings to economic damage. In Italy, main natural disaster is the earthquake and follow the trends as you can confirm below.
However, recent earthquake disasters in Italy are so severe.  With this August earthquake, the number of casualties would be over 550. The disaster recovery is also the issue. As mentioned in Day_107, “Italy has a poor record of rebuilding after quakes. About 8,300 people who were forced to leave their houses after a deadly earthquake in L’Aquila in 2009 are still living in temporary accommodation(Reuters).”

Table 1 and Table 2 show the 1900-2016 top 10 deadliest and costliest disasters in Italy (EM-DAT).

Table 1  Totals deaths
Italy deadliest

Table 2  Total damage
Italy costliest disasters

Day_130 : Natural Disasters in China (2) – Two Earthquake Disasters


Two Earthquakes
Yang Zhang William Drake, et al. (2016)* indicates interesting views on two earthquakes disaster recoveries, the 1976 Tangshan earthquake and the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake. The point is, why the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake recovery was so rapid compared to the 1976’s earthquake.
However, the paper could add more about the total background changes of China such as society, economy, and politics. The china has changed dramatically after the 1976 from historical viewpoints.

The Tangshan earthquake is one of the deadliest disasters in the world and the Wenchuan earthquake is one of the top ten costliest disasters in the world also. Munich Re ranked the Wenchuan as the top four costliest disaster after the Japanese Tsunami (2011), the Hurricane Katrina (2005). and the Kobe Earthquake (1995). The number of deaths caused by the Tangshan is still controversial because of the Chinese government’s political climates at the time.

A Comparison of the two earthquakes

Yang Zhang William Drake, et al. (2016)

The Rapid Disaster Recovery after the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake
Yang Zhang William Drake, et al. (2016) describes the following points, historical and socio-economic contexts, why the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake recovery was so rapid compared to the 1976’s earthquake.

[Historical context]

  1. The Chinese government drew lessons from its handling of the Tangshan earthquake recovery. The government emphasized the importance of planning for coordinated reconstruction.
  2. China had established a strong planning institution to support its rapid growth agenda since the economic reform began in the late 1970s. The contrast of recovery planning between the two earthquakes highlights the notion that a pre-existing planning institution and pre-existing policy documents that describe development visions for a disaster area.

[Socio-economic context]

  1. China’s ability to promptly fund the earthquake recovery was far superior in the 2000s. China’s annual GDP in the year prior to the Wenchuan earthquake was 3.494 trillion USD 2007, which was 22 times its GDP in 1975.
  2. The earthquake happened less than three months before the Beijing Olympic Games. It was in the government’s best interest to move swiftly with the response and recovery to ensure social stability for the Olympic Games.
  3. The global economic downturn of 2008 might have also played a role in speeding up the earthquake recovery. To stimulate the economy, heavy investment in the earthquake recovery became a convenient policy option.

However, many things can be added about the above points such as the acceptance of international aids (Day_95).

Day_95 : World Disaster Chronology 1976 (1)


This rapid recovery from Wenchuan reminds us the Japanese historical trends  from 1945 to 1959, especially after the Typhoon Isewan in 1959. The Haiti’s cases, 2010 Earthquake and 2016 Hurricane Matthew also can be found as the same analogy (The below related articles across the web).

The Meanings of the Lessons
We cannot experience the disasters so often, of course, we do not want to have disasters. This is why we should learn from the past disasters and this is what we can do all the time.

*Yang Zhang William Drake, et al. (2016) Disaster Recovery Planning after Two Catastrophes: The 1976 Tangshan Earthquake and the 2008 Wenchuan Earthquake, International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 34(2):174-203