Tokyo (VNA) – The provision of disaster response skill training for people is critically important to the countries vulnerable to natural disasters like Vietnam so as to create response preparedness for each individual, said Kazuko Kori, Mayor of Sendai city in Japan’s Miyagi prefecture.
This is part of the recommendations Kori made for Vietnam on the basis of the lessons Sendai city learnt from the double disasters of earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan in March 2011.
The disasters destroyed 30,034 houses and part of nearly 100,000 others while claiming 904 lives and injuring 2,275 others in Sendai city.
In a recent interview granted to the Vietnam News Agency (VNA), Kori said natural disasters can happen at any time and spare no one, and that disaster response depends much on each people’s response capacity and skills.
Stressing the importance of disaster response skill training, she held that mutual assistance among local residents in the initial period of a disaster is highly important to the mitigation of disaster consequences.
Among the three major lessons Sendai city learnt from the 2011 twin disasters, the first is preparing infrastructure resilient to strong earthquakes, the mayor said, noting that after a major earthquake in 1978, the Sendai administration has invested resources in building resilient public works.
Thanks to that, although the scale of the 2011 tsunami was beyond imagination, its consequences were minimised, which was also a favourable basis for the city to quickly address the aftermath and recover.
The second lesson is that post-disaster reconstruction efforts should not only restore the status quo but also work towards sustainability, the official said.
The third is people’s unanimity in disaster relief, Kori said, elaborating that it is important to secure people’s self-awareness and unanimity since the administration’s capacity is limited while natural disasters are increasingly unpredictable.
The local administration is working to develop Sendai into an environmentally friendly and disaster resilient city, and equipping each resident with disaster response skills is among its focuses to achieve this goal in the time ahead, she added./.