Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications Statistics Bureau
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Chapter 29 Disasters and Accidents

  This chapter contains statistics on disasters and accidents, such as: natural disasters, fires road traffic accidents, railway accidents, marine accidents, aircraft accidents, gas accidents and electricity accidents. It also contains budgets for disaster preparedness and prevention and statistics on fire services and emergency disaster relief activities.

  In connection with disasters and accidents, industrial accidents are contained "Chapter 19 Labour and Wages" and the pollution is in "Chapter 30 Environment."

Statistics on natural disasters

  Statistics on natural disasters have been continuously available since 1868 in terms of the damage caused. Before the World War II, the Minister of Home Affairs conducted several surveys on natural disasters, whereas in postwar days the National Police Agency and the Fire Defense Agency have collected pertinent data.

1. "Report on Natural Disasters" - 1

  The National Police Agency collects data on disasters through the prefectural police and compiles statistics in the "Report on Disasters," which shows the extent of damage by type of disaster.

2. "Report on Natural Disasters" - 2

  The Fire Defense Agency compiles statistics on natural disasters from reports submitted by the prefectural government based on the Basic Law for Disaster Control Measures.

3. "Report on Measures Taken to Control Disasters" (White paper on disaster control)

  The Central Council on Disaster Preparedness and Management prepares the report concerning measures taken to prevent and control disasters based on the regulations stipulated in the Basic Law for Disaster Control Measures. The Director-General for Policy Planning of Disaster Prevention within the Cabinet Office is responsible for the report, which contains statistics on disasters.

4. Annual report of social security statistics

  The Secretariat to the Council of Social Security System had been collecting broad statistical data on social security to edit the report since 1958. From 2001, the National Institute of Population and Social Security Research have prepared the report for publication, which contains statistics concerning disaster relief expenditure. These statistics are based on the data collected by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare.

Survey on damage to crops

  According to the annual statistical report of agriculture, forestry and fisheries, the Ministry of Finance ordered each prefectural government to submit an annual report concerning yields of and damage to agricultural crops such as rice, barley and wheat in 1880. This is the prototype of the present survey concerning damages on agricultural crops.

  The present system of the statistics goes back to the Crop Survey that began in 1947 (specified as Designated Statistics No. 37 in 1950). They include statistics on land areas, harvests and damage.

Statistics on fires

  The Fire Defense Agency issues the "Annual Report on Fires" in which it compiles statistics on how fires started and the damage they caused based on the reports from local public bodies. It also publishes the "Annual Report on Fire Defence" in which statistics are compiled concerning fire-fighting activities based on the factual survey on fire services and disaster control.

Statistics on traffic accidents

  The organization that compiles statistics differs depending on where a traffic accident has taken place, on a railway and an industry track or on a road. The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport is in charge of the former, whereas the National Police Agency is in charge of the latter. In the "Traffic Statistics," road traffic accidents are summarized as statistics concerning accidents nationwide, traffic control, traffic regulations and driver's licenses.

Statistics on railway accidents

  The former Japan National Railways compiled statistics on accidents on their railways until 1986, based on the Japan National Railway Service Regulation and etc. Subsequent to its privatization in 1987 as Japan Railway Companies (JR's), the statistics are compiled by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport. Statistics concerning private railway companies (excluding JR's) are compiled by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport based on the reports submitted by private railway companies in compliance with the regulation on reporting railway accidents and the regulation on reporting accidents on industry tracks.

  The "Annual Report of Railway Statistics" edited by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport is the primary source of the statistics in this report.

Statistics on Shipping Accidents

  The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport compiles statistics on marine accidents for planning measures to protect the lives and property of people at sea.

Survey on airplane accidents

  Airplane companies are mandated under the Aviation Law to report on any accident involving an airplane. Since 1973, the Aircraft Accidents Investigation Commission had made inquiries into aircraft accidents according to the Law for the Establishment of the Aircraft Accidents Investigation Commission. In 2001, the said Law was revised to add inquiries into the cause of railway accidents, thereby establishing the Aircraft and Railway Accidents Investigation Commission.

Statistics on gas accidents

  Article 112 of the Enforcement Regulation of the Gas Enterprise Law provides that any accident involving gas work and gas supply equipment must be reported. Currently, the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency under the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry compiles statistics concerning gas accidents.

Statistics on electric accidents

  The "Regulation on Reports Concerning Electricity Enterprise" based on the Electricity Enterprise Law provides that electric accidents must be reported. Currently, the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy under the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry compiles statistics on accidents involving electricity as the "Electric Safety Statistics."


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