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QW 052812 “Virtual Viewpoint Discussion 0528”

US Engineers Test Building’s Strength Against Earthquakes

Discussion A
1) Would you say that your country is well-prepared for earthquakes? Why or why not?
First of all, I’d like to point out that no country will be enough-prepared for earthquakes because we’ll never be able to predict what Mother Nature would do to us. Even for an earthquake-prone county like Japan, disaster preparedness is going to be enough and sufficient. That said, our country had a long history to survive or cope with frequent earthquakes, and have built a system to predict and alert upcoming earthquakes to give precaution to the people to the would-be affected areas.


2) How can the government and the people improve on their ability to deal with disasters?
Experiences are always the best teacher. We can learn from our past experiences to develop our skills and knowledge to deal with disasters such as earthquakes. After the Great Hanshin earthquake in 1995, we had opportunities to hear accounts of those who went through the earthquake, and learn from their experiences. For instance, the construction law was tightened a few years later in order to prevent wooden houses from collapsing at the event of a big earthquake.

Discussion B
3) What are the benefits of conducting mock tests like one mentioned in the article?
One of the benefits is to be able to find out what is likely to happen at a real occasion. If something needs to be improved and adjusted, it can be fixed and reflected to develop better systems.

4) Can you think of other mock tests that would personally benefit you or other people?
Although it’s more like training, not a mock test, I think everybody should experience swimming with their clothes on to be well- prepared to survive when drowning. I consider myself as a good swimmer, but I’m not very confident in swimming with my clothes as well as in my swimsuit. If once experienced or trained, you’re unlikely to panic when thrown into water and are likely to deal with a situation to successfully survive.

(30 minutes / 346 words)

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