On December 7, 1944, the Tonankai Earthquake (magnitude 7.9) centered in the Sea of Kumano occured. The earthquake, which produced intense shaking, and a tsunami that reached heights of up to 9 meters along the parts of the Mie coastline facing the Sea of Kumano, caused a great deal of damage.
Now, another earthquake of similar scale is predicted to occur off the coast of Mie. It is therefore important that we all learn about earthquakes and tsunamis.
The Nankai Trough is a deep ocean faultline whose northernmost point is Suruga Bay. The faultline stretches south to the area off the shore of Omaezaki, and bends southwest, extending through the areas off the coast of Shionomisaki in Wakayama Prefecture and Murotozaki in Kochi Prefecture, before terminating in the waters off the coast of the Kyushu region. Large earthquakes that occur deep in the trough are known as “Nankai Trough Earthquakes,” and one of these earthquakes is predicted to occur in the near future.
●Nankai Trough Earthquake ・・・The likelihood of a magnitude 8～9 earthquake occuring along the Nakai Trough within the next 30 years is approximately 70%
（Headquarters for Earthquake Research Promotion (Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology ）
Large earthquakes have been known to hit this region and cause severe damage every 100 to 150 years. If one of these earthquakes, which have been well documented throughout Japanese history, were to occur along the Nankai Trough, the probability of seismic intensity and the main municipalities to be affected are:
– Shaking rated at 7: Shima, Minami-Ise, Kumano and Mihama-cho regions
– Shaking rated between 6 weak to 6 strong : Chusei, Ise-Shima and Higashi-Kishu regions
Additionally, in the event of a Nankai Trough Earthquake, Mie’s coastal areas are expected to be struck by tsunamis several meters high, with the highest waves exceeding 10 meters.
Damage predictions in Mie Prefecture, if the Nankai Trough Earthquake occurs, will be approximately 9,200 deaths caused by the earthquake and 42,000 deaths caused by tsunami.
If you are in a place near the sea and feel shaking that lasts a long time or even a weak shaking, immediately evacuate to high ground to protect yourself from possible tsunamis.
Tsunamis move at extremely high speeds and it is already too late to evacuate once a tsunami is visible.
It is crucial for you to review the “hazard maps” published by your city or town. Use this map to figure out where tsunamis are likely to cause damage, and memorize the route to the nearest tsunami evacuation area.
It is impossible to release yourself from the grip of a tsunami once you are caught in one. Even tsunamis less than 1 meter high can be dangerous. If there is a chance that a tsunami will hit the area where you are, evacuating to higher ground may save your life.
＊The information in this video is based on materials published by the Mie Prefectural Government’s Department of Disaster Prevention, such as the Mie Natural Disaster Handbook and the Earthquake Damage Prediction Research Results.