Archive for March, 2011

Rolling blackouts and equitable relief distribution challenge logisticians in Japan – Logistics Update 3/31

March 31, 2011 Leave a comment

ALAN is providing daily updates from Ms. Hikaru Kajita, a CSCMP member in Japan. Additional information is available at

“Since supporting goods distribution became almost smooth, new news about earthquake and tsunami disaster has decreased. Instead, news of accident of Fukushima daiichi nuclear electric plant, and influence given to manufactures of rolling blackout are increased. These two impact Japanese economy much higher than earthquake and tsunami, and these two give Japanese logisticians to reconstruct current logistics systems.

There is bias of supporting goods between refuges. One city needs office goods to start ordinal work, other city needs cars for doing delivery by itself, but the other city still need foods and other living goods. The thought factors of this problem are, that the information transmission between prefecture office and refuge doesn’t go well, and lack of logistics knowledge in the city office. In such a regional disaster, it has been understood that these system of an individual city become important.

Yesterday, I heard the living condition of Sendai city. He lives in the half between place that exist in the Sendai station and the tsunami. His house didn’t get any damage, electricity has come back on 12th, only one day after the earthquake. Instead, he has to buy all the necessities by himself, and this is still hard. The restoration of usual circulation is late because of concentrating the delivery of goods to the stricken area.”

Categories: Japan Tags: , , ,

Aid distribution presents unique challenges – Japan Logistics Update 3/29

March 29, 2011 Leave a comment

ALAN is providing daily updates from Ms. Hikaru Kajita, a CSCMP member in Japan. Additional information is available at

“National road, railway, port are almost recovered, so MLIT disaster web site update frequency go slow.
Current Status of Transport Infrastructure (MLIT):

The situation of the donation goods collected in Tokyo metropolitan government was taken up on today’s TV. For this disaster, individual good donation direct send to disaster area government is prohibited. In addition, each safe area government specified the item, unused, unopened, one item in one case, or bringing to the specified place to sort. This system is for lighten the workload in the stricken area.

However, lots of parcels are sent to the Tokyo metropolitan government, which don’t follow these rules. Someone sent used clothes which are not specified. Some parcel pack assorted foods. Because of sorting workload is so high and so many goods that cannot send to the stricken area, now, Tokyo metropolitan government stops to accept individual donation goods.

Even if supporting goods are sent to the stricken area warehouse, these are not sent to victims because of the shortage of picker. Stricken area donation goods warehouses need volunteers of inside the city. Food and lodgings cannot be offered, so outside city volunteers must secure their own food and lodgings. But, persons who are living inside the city are also victims, cities cannot collect enough volunteers.

Parcel transporter, Yamato and Sagawa help several cities supporting goods distribution. Yamato arranged about 500 pickers and about 200 tracks for stricken cities. Sagawa began to do the distribution support of the Miyagi prefecture in about 300 refuge places. This may help the situation better, but because the disaster area is too wide, more volunteers are needed.”

Categories: Japan Tags: , , ,

Boots on the ground information critical to effective aid distribution – Japan logistics update 3/28

March 28, 2011 Leave a comment

ALAN is providing daily updates from Ms. Hikaru Kajita, a CSCMP member in Japan. Additional information is available at

“Recovery of road, ports, and railroad are going very fast. With the recovery of transportation, distribution of goods has been advanced and volunteers have been increased activity. Along the way, problem of recovering system’s problem become apparent.

Because of frequent earthquake and tsunami, Japan has disaster management plan for 50 years. The plan is refined from the experiences of previous disaster like Kobe and Chuetsu earthquake.
Disaster Management in Japan:

Based on this Japan disaster management plan, original donation goods distribution system was created by the prefecture level, because controlling distribution in city municipal level is hard in terms of either person power and person skill. Each prefecture gathered donation goods and distributed to evacuation sites. However, this time disaster spread very wide area; distribution is controlled by both prefecture and city. In addition, city pairing system is taken; one safe area city helps one disaster city’s operation and necessary goods arrangement. For cities distribution system, local LSPs help their operation, because they well-known about the local road and residents.

Main flow of the distribution is now working. that is, prefecture warehouse – city warehouse – predefined evacuation site. But still several flows should be improved. Some peoples stay together in the place that is not predefined, like small building, clinic, relatives large house, or even in the house that is not broken by earthquake and tsunami. Donation goods don’t reach enough to those peoples Local doctors, nurse, and volunteers are checking possible place to live, find peoples, and arrange distribution that they need.”

Categories: Japan Tags: , , ,

Japan Logistics Update 3/26

March 26, 2011 Leave a comment

ALAN is providing daily updates from Ms. Hikaru Kajita, a CSCMP member in Japan. Additional information is available at

“After 2 weeks from disaster, transportation recovery became stable condition. Some airlines and vessels still refuse to stop Japan, but most of international transportation network is back.

This weekend, because of Tohoku Highway’s open for every car, lot of relatives of victims and volunteers visit disaster area to help them. Iwate and Miyagi Prefectures have step by step reconstruction.

Comparing to that, Fukushima Prefecture is still in difficult condition by Fukushima Daiichi nuclear electric plant. Especially, Soma and Iwaki cities logistics need much help.

Fukushima Prefecture is divided in 3 areas, which is Hama-dori (Pacific Ocean site), Nala-dori and Aizu. In Naka-dori area, there are many electronic factories, and earthquake affected them. Some plants damage become worldwide shortage of special parts. Aizu’s main industry is agriculture and tourism. Aizu also was earthquake, but little damage.

Heavy district area is Hama-dori. This area got earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear plant affection. Most of the cities in Hana-dori are within the radiation evacuation or “in-door stay” area, but Soma and Iwaki cities are not. Even this, both cities received logistics problem. Truck drivers hesitate to go, so they need do pick-up necessity goods by themselves. There are about 38 thousand people living in Soma city, and 348 thousand people living in Iwaki city.
Cities within the evacuation area start to move municipal unit moving to safe area. Most cities are staying within Fukushima Prefecture, Futaba-machi Town moved to Saitama Prefecture.
Information of Fukushima Prefecture:

One good news for ALAN activity.
Nippon Express have to transport relief supplies to earthquake-stricken Sendai Port of northeastern Pacific Ocean, its internal coastal RORO vessels – Tokyo, Hokkaido in the course will be conducted to the Sendai harbor extraordinary. Nippon Express will continue if there is a demand. (Japanese) (Japanese)

Tomorrow is Sunday, so I will send next update news on Monday.”

Categories: Japan Tags: , , ,

FEMA Seeks Volunteers for NDMN Stress Test

March 25, 2011 Leave a comment

In order to see how much activity the National Donations Management Network (NDMN) can handle over a short period of time in the event of an actual Catastrophic Incident, FEMA is conducting a stress test on March 31, 2011. The organization is seeking volunteers to make an offering on the website within a 30-minute window from 2:00 – 2:30 EDT that day. Click here to register for this event.

Categories: Disaster Exercises

Exercise in disaster response using Crowdsourcing and Social Media

March 25, 2011 1 comment

ALAN encourages participation in this month’s Exercise 24 Europe (X24 EUR) a virtual disaster relief exercise scheduled for 29 March to 1 April. X24 EUR will demonstrate uses of social media, crowdsourcing, and collaboration tools in an innovative cloud computing environment. The scenario is a complex simulated seismic event that generates a tsunami in the Adriatic with corresponding damage to to essential resources and critical infrastructure in the Balkans. This represents a opportunity to participate in an exercise that will bring together the NGO, government, academic and business communities to cope with a large scale natural disaster situation. The National Defense University’s TIDES program will be participating. Should you wish to participate follow the above link for additional information and registration information.

Categories: Disaster Exercises

Japan Logistics Update 3/25

March 25, 2011 Leave a comment

ALAN is providing daily updates from Ms. Hikaru Kajita, a CSCMP member in Japan. Additional information is available at

“Today’s MLIT disaster page is much changed from yesterday.

It emphasizes safety of radiation to foreigner. Nuclear electric plants accident became more impact than the earthquake and Tsunami. This harmful rumor causes many troubles on Japanese logistics.

Today, the government requested the voluntary evacuation to the people who is living in the “indoor standby area”.

On March 12th, the government decided 20 km range from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant as the evacuation area, and 30 km range were decided as the indoor standby area. Since this instruction was given, distribution of life-safe goods to 20-30 km area came to stagnate. Carriers refused to transport fuels, foods, medicines, etc.. This is a reason why voluntary evacuation was requested.

Today’s Nihon Keizai Newspaper (Nikkei) has had several articles about bottled water issue.

According to Nikkei, lack of the plastics label pasted to surroundings of the bottle as one of the factor to prevent the bottling water production increase. In Japan, each item of drinks need label which shows ingredients, place of production, PL in charge, and so on. This causes hurdle for importing foods. Because of printing these in Japanese, ordinal importing lead-time is about 3 months.

Coca-Cola Japan (CCCJ) already ordered bottled water to Coca-Cola Korea. CCCJ also start negotiation to government about this label problem.

Japanese Consumers’ Co-Operative Union (CO-OP) asked public health center about donation purpose bottled water food label, the public health center answered that in this case, these information outside box is enough.”

Categories: Japan Tags: , , ,