Sep 2019


Emergency Assistance: Post-typhoon Blackouts in Chiba

On September 9, a strong typhoon struck Kanto region of Japan. The typhoon (No. 15 or Faxai) made landfall and caused severe damage in areas including Shizuoka, Kanagawa, Tokyo and Chiba.

In Chiba Prefecture, the typhoon knocked down hundreds of trees in the mountains, which caused significant damage to electricity supply facilities, leading to wide-scale blackouts in the region. A maximum of 900,000 households experienced power-cuts related to the typhoon. The blackout also affected the water supply in many parts of the prefecture as the pumps directing the water supply could not function without electricity. Mobile network and telephone communications were also not functioning for days due to the blackout. With these constraints, the local authorities have not yet been able to grasp the full extent of the damage.

A day after the landfall, on September 10, the Peace Boat Disaster Relief Volunteer Center (PBV) dispatched three members to the affected areas in Chiba Prefecture, conducted damage assessments in Tateyama City and Minami-Boso City, and distributed cold sports drinks, bottled water and ice lollies in a community of Shirahama-cho, Minamiboso City.

As of September 18, residents in some parts of Chiba Prefecture are still without water and electricity. Following the emergency response last week, the PBV dispatched members to Minami-Boso City again today to provide support to the residents. It has been raining and chilly in Chiba today, so the PBV team prepared some soup to warm up the residents as well as stir-fried noodles that they can eat at home.

More blue tarpaulins covering the damaged roofs have appeared since last week, but the situation is still challenging. One gentleman we met at the eating space looked very tired, but he was still willing to talk to us. He told us that his wife had been in a wheelchair even before the typhoon struck the area, and he went through a very difficult time taking care of her without electricity or gas. As the short-stay nursing home has reopened today, he finally managed to get some respite. The recovery of welfare facilities and services is very important for the local residents.

We will continue our relief efforts for those who have limited access to support. These emergency assistance activities have been made possible thanks to the generous donations from our monthly supporters. We sincerely thank each supporter for their continued contributions and seek further cooperation.

Call for donations: Emergency assistance to those affected by Typhoon No.15. Click here for details.