Japan is accelerating its efforts to improve the conditions of those displaced to evacuation centers behind the earthquake magnitude 7.6 on January 1 in the country, which has already left at least 213 dead, 37 missing and 567 seriously injuredaccording to the latest official figures.
Among the 213 deaths are 8 people who did not die directly from the earthquake, but from causes related to the deterioration of their health conditionsdue in some cases to the stress of being evacuated, among other factors.
The total number of displaced people amounts to 25,000 peoplewhich are located in evacuation centers where conditions have worsened and, consequently, encouraged respiratory and gastrointestinal diseasesincluding norovirus infections, to 70 displaced people.
To prevent the deterioration of the victims’ health and prevent the spread of infectious diseases in the centers, Japanese authorities are rushing to temporarily transfer evacuees to hotels and ryokan (traditional Japanese accommodations) while trying to find more comfortable accommodations.
The evacuees in the town of Wajimaone of the most punished along with Suzu (respectively, they have accumulated 83 and 98 deaths), left on Wednesday in buses to a sports center in the prefecture of Kanazawa and eight hotels and ryokans have so far accommodated 266 of the evacuees.
The central government, led by the prime minister, is expected Fumio Kishidaadapt accommodation for 10,000 evacuees in the prefectures of Ishikawa, Toyama, Fukui and Niigataaccording to the digital newspaper Japan Todayciting sources close to the matter.
The number of missing people, 37, continues to fluctuate and fell compared to yesterday. The list of names also includes people who could not be contacted, although there is no indication that they were affected by the earthquake.
The Ishikawa prefectural government argues that many people still cannot report whether they are safedue to communications failures and blocked roads.
Both local authorities and the Japanese meteorological agency ask “caution and awareness” in the areas affected by the instability of the terrain due to the rains, which have not stopped since Tuesday and make the ground slippery by melting the snow.
Rescue and search operations continue, although hampered by infrastructure damage and the storm, and inspections of buildings at risk of collapse are being accelerated to avoid secondary damage.
Some 3,100 people remain trapped in localities that have been isolated by cuts to roads and other transportation routes, while some 15,000 homes suffer power outages and another 59,000 do not have running water since January 1.
The situation was described by the Japanese Executive as “disaster of extreme severity” and subsidies to affected localities will be expanded to try to achieve objectives such as the rapid reconstruction of damaged roads and farmland.
The police forces of the Noto peninsula have reinforced devices and patrols after 17 crimes were detected related to thefts and break-ins in houses damaged by the earthquake and evacuation shelters.
(With information from EFE)