Japan is prone to natural disasters such as earthquakes, typhoons, and volcanic eruptions. Luckily, Shimane has relatively little seismic activity, and also a low risk of tsunamis. However on April 9th 2018, a magnitude 6.1 earthquake hit Oda City in central Shimane, injuring 5 people and causing damage to the surrounding area. Therefore, it is important for JET participants to be prepared for various disasters, and to have established means of communication should help be needed.

Here is a list of resources that may prove useful in a disaster situation:

General information

Disaster Risk Reduction – A series of animated videos on preparing for different disaster situations (e.g. heavy snow, tornadoes, earthquakes, etc.) published by Japan’s Public Relations Office.

Disaster Handbook for Foreign Residents (PDF) – An easy-to-follow guide about disasters in Shimane, useful Japanese phrases, emergency contact information, and more. The PAs highly recommend that you study this handbook.

Japan Meteorological Agency – Japan’s government agency responsible for weather forecasting and information on natural disasters. Their website has maps showing real-time warnings and recent natural disasters.

Shimane Disaster Prevention Information – Overview of current weather warnings, advisories, and emergency information from the Shimane Prefectural Government (main page offered in English).

Survival guide

Survival, Evasion, and Recovery (PDF) – A comprehensive, 96-page survival guide published by the U.S. military.

Translation cards for disasters

Natural Disaster Card (PDF) – The PAs recommend that you print this card out and keep it with you at all times. It contains useful Japanese phrases and contact information in case of a natural disaster.

Emergency Card (PDF) – We also recommend that you print this out; these cards can be used to quickly communicate with emergency personnel if you do not speak Japanese.


Preparing for a Landslide (PDF) – Information on preventing injury during landslides. Occurrences of landslides can be common in Shimane, especially during heavy rain.


Preparing for a Tsunami (PDF) – Information on preventing injury during tsunamis. They are relatively rare in Shimane, but an earthquake in the Sea of Japan could put Shimane at risk.

Missile attack

Civil Protection Portal Site – Government information on what to do in case of a missile attack. Also contains information on the J-ALERT information transmission service (country-wide). However, the likelihood of such an attack is extremely small.

More Information

Disaster Management in Japan (PDF) – An information booklet from Japan’s Cabinet Office that introduces the types of disasters that occur in Japan, how the government responds, statistics on past disasters, and future predictions.

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