Disaster Prevention Day in Japan Date in the current year: September 1, 2016

Disaster Prevention Day in Japan Since 1960 people of Japan annually observe Disaster Prevention Day on September 1. This observance commemorates the anniversary of the Great Kantō earthquake, that struck the Japanese main island of Honshu on September 1, 1923. Every year schools across Japan take a moment of silence to commemorate the victims of the earthquake.

The earthquake devastated Tokyo, the port city of Yokohama and surrounding prefectures of Chiba, Shizuoka and Kanagawa. About 142,800 people died, including 40,000 missing. The earthquake lasted for four minutes and it was followed by a strong typhoon and a tsunami. Many people died in fire, that developed into firestorms and spread rapidly. The earthquake caused the biggest natural disaster damage in the pre-war Japan.

In 1960 Disaster Prevention Day was established in Japan to commemorate the victims of the earthquake and remind people about the importance of preparation to the disaster. Japan is located near a fault zone, that causes a major earthquake every 70 years. September and October are the middle of the typhoon season, that is why schools, all public and private organizations host disaster drills.

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