We sincerely appreciate the sympathy and concern received from many countries.
Significant accidents occurred on January 1st and 2nd during the New Year holiday.
We are deeply grateful for the sympathy and concern we have received not only
from all over Japan but also from Taiwan, South Korea, China, North Korea, and many other countries.
On January 1st this year, a major earthquake with a seismic intensity of 7 to 8 occurred,
centered in Ishikawa Prefecture. The earthquake,
occurring in the cold, was a great ordeal for those living in the area.
We deeply sympathize with those who lost their lives under collapsed
buildings due to the cold. The extensive damage to roads and the hope
for a swift end to the earthquake and a return to calm conditions are in our thoughts.
We believe that financial assistance should be the highest priority for everyone.
We particularly recommend that business owners who can
afford it should send direct financial aid to Ishikawa Prefecture
and other affected areas. This money is expected to be processed
as tax contributions. We sincerely ask for your warm support.
I have made a donation to the Ishikawa Prefectural office,
as I believe this has a greater effect than sending goods.
On January 2nd, an accident occurred at Haneda Airport involving airplanes
from Japan Airlines and the Japan Coast Guard. The accident happened
when the planes, loaded with relief supplies due to the earthquake the day before,
collided due to a mistake by the air traffic control and
a miscommunication from the control tower to the Japan Coast Guard,
with a plane that had come from Hokkaido to Tokyo. In this accident,
five crew members of the Japan Coast Guard lost their lives.
The Japan Airlines jet came to a stop after taxiing on the runway,
and all passengers were rescued thanks to the prompt response
of the cabin crew. Additionally, the captain ensured all passengers
had evacuated before he was the last to leave the plane.
The cause of this accident is currently under investigation,
but it is suspected that it may be related to air traffic
controller negligence and a misunderstanding by the Japan
Coast Guard’s pilot. Fortunately, all passengers escaped safely.
In such difficult times, we are deeply grateful for everyone’s
support and solidarity. We believe that your warm support
and thoughts will bring new hope and strength to these areas.