Where to take cover? Japanese helpless over possible strike
TOKYO: Take cover in a sturdy building or get underground. That’s the advice given to the Japanese people in the event of a North Korean missile strike.
But there are two big problems: most homes are made of wood and lack a basement. In the countryside, there is often no building made of concrete.
And with only minutes from launch to impact, there’s simply no time to take cover.
As North Korea this week fired its second missile over Japan in less than a month and threatened to “sink” the country into the sea, many Japanese feel a sense of helplessness in the face of the threat from Pyongyang.
When the missile was detected, the J-Alert system kicked in, warnings blared from loudspeakers, TV programming was interrupted and text messages sent to every mobile phone.
Local authorities and schools regularly stage drills to prepare residents in the event of a big earthquake and this year many exercises included practising how to take cover if a missile is launched.
But polls show the Japanese are far from blase about the threat. In a survey published last week by the NHK channel, 52% said they were “very worried” and around one third said they were “worried to some extent.”
Only 2% said they were “not worried at all.”