City of Sapporo > Information on Hokkaido Eastern Iburi Earthquake

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Update:October 18, 2018

Information on Hokkaido Eastern Iburi Earthquake

A Message from Mayor Akimoto to the People of Sapporo
Re: the 2018 Hokkaido Eastern Iburi Earthquake

Numerous areas were significantly damaged by the large earthquake which occurred on September 6th, which had its epicenter in the Hokkaido Eastern Iburi Region; many precious lives were lost, many people injured, and many houses damaged.

From the bottom of my heart, I pray for the souls lost and offer my condolences to all those affected by this disaster.

Now, four days after the earthquake hit, the power outage which affected every region in Hokkaido is nearly resolved, and water supply has returned to most areas, except for certain areas where damage was particularly devastating. Although society is returning to normal, including public transportation, many people are forced to live in evacuation centers due to damage to their houses or fear of aftershocks.

The City of Sapporo will continue to do our utmost to support the victims of this disaster, and put forth our best efforts for recovery and reconstruction of the city, though we also have a request of our citizens as well.

The power outage has been resolved, although restarting operation at the main power plants will take time, and our electric power supply is tight. The nation as well as the Hokkaido Electric Power Company has requested that we conserve energy. The City is engaging in various ways to conserve including reducing daytime-service on the subways and streetcars. However, in order to avoid another power outage or planned blackout, we ask that all citizens help conserve energy by turning off unnecessary lighting and turning your household appliances to energy-saving mode.

Also, it seems that unverified information is being spread around by social media and other sources. I ask once again that you take ample precautions against information that causes unnecessary fear and uncertainty, and to calmly confirm the authenticity of information.


About the Lifestyle Support Guide

The Lifestyle Support Guide provides information about comprehensive, integrated support for those who were forced to evacuate due to the Hokkaido Eastern Iburi Earthquake and those who feel uneasy about their lifestyle moving forward.
Posted information will be updated from time to time. For questions regarding the Lifestyle Support Guide, please call the Sapporo City Call Center. (TEL: 011-222-4894 (8:00a.m. to 9:00p.m.)).

○Regarding misinformation
Currently, mistaken information such as “an aftershock will occur at __ o’clock” is floating around social media and the internet. Please check information from public institutions and be careful not to be misled by false information.

○Regarding consumer troubles taken advantage of because of the disaster
If you encounter any issues such as 1.) being told that piping is out of order due to the earthquake and made to sign an expensive contract, 2.) being deceived by fake organizations who make you pay nominal donations or disaster relief funds, or 3.) receiving suspicious phone calls from someone pretending to city officials, please do not deal with this alone. Respond in a calm manner by consulting those around you or the Sapporo City Consumer Center (011-728-2121).

○Regarding multi-lingual consultations
The following location is open for multilingual consultations, with a focus on English.
・Venue: MN Bldg. 3F (Kita 1-jo Nishi 3-chome, Chuo ward)
・Reception Hours: 9:00a.m. to 5:30p.m. (Closed on Sundays & National Holidays)
・TEL: 011-211-2105 (Sapporo International Communication Plaza)


Relief donations for the Hokkaido Eastern Iburi Earthquake (City-based)
The City of Sapporo is collecting relief funds for those who were affected by the Hokkaido Eastern Iburi Earthquake which occurred on Sept. 6, 2018 at 3:08 a.m. The received funds will be delivered directly to those affected according to the extent of damage. We thank you for your cooperation and support.

Please check here for more details


 (Latest updates are in red lettering.)
The City of Sapporo is currently experiencing power outages and road collapse due to an earthquake experienced 9/6/2018 at 03:08 A.M. First and foremost, please take measure to protect yourself.

The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) has warned that earthquakes may occur at any time for the next week.

1. Earthquake Key Information 
 What: Earthquake with a maximum seismic intensity of upper 5 in the Sapporo area

 When: Sept. 6 (9/6) 03:08 A.M.
 Epicenter: Iburi region. 
                Eastern Iburi Region continues to experience seismic activity.
                Concerns of increasing danger of landslides/house collapse (areas with strong quakes.)
                Be aware that seismic activity may continue. May experience heavy rain.
                Take measures to protect yourself, and do not go into dangerous areas unless unavoidable.

Latest info on earthquakes from the Japan Meteorological Association (JMA)

2. When there is a large earthquake

  • Move away from household items that could fall over, go find a place to protect yourself (ducking for cover under a table, etc.), wait until the shaking stops. 
  •  Turn off all sources of heat (fire, gas valves, etc.) to prevent fire
  • Open your door. Confirm location of the evacuation exit. 
  •  OUTSIDE: Beware of falling objects such as bricks, fallen over dispenser machines, glass, and signs. 
  •  Near the SHORELINE: evacuate immediately to higher ground to avoid possible tsunamis. 
  •  DRIVING: slow down, move towards the left side of the road, and turn your engine off.
    In case of evacuation, leave the key, do not lock the doors, and evacuate on foot taking your valuables (vehicle registration certificate etc.)

 To have ready in case of disaster:

  • Three days’ worth of food & drinking water, other supplies for evacuation (I.E. food, drinking water, portable radio, clothes, hand warmers, first-aid kit, flashlight, lighter or matches, rope, cash, valuables, rain gear etc.
  • Make a game plan for contacting family/friends and decide where to meet in case of disaster
  • Always carry a card with your 1.) name 2.) address 3.) phone number 4.) health info such as blood type 5.) contact numbers for family, relatives, workplace, and embassy.
  • Fix furniture to the walls to prevent it from falling and injuring someone / breaking

MORE INFO: Sapporo Disaster Prevention Handbook


3. Evacuation Centers in Operation (Updated: as of 11:00 (9/18))

  Click here for list

4. Latest Infomation

 We ask for your cooperation in conserving energy.

 Power has returned to houses in Sapporo after the wide-spread power outage. However, in order to ensure sufficient electricity supply, we as that those who have received power do their best to conserve energy.

 What you can do at home to conserve:
   Unplug all power outlets you aren’t using
   Turn off all unnecessary lights
   Turn your refrigerator’s cooling setting to “low”
   Have all family members be in the same room, if possible.
   ..and more

Letter from Mayor Akimoto addressed to the Citizens of Sapporo regarding energy conservation request(PDF:51KB)

Disaster Victim Certificates 
Homeowners and residents of homes that were damaged by the 2018 Hokkaido Iburi Toubu Earthquake may recieve **Disaster Victim Certificates (risai shomeisho 罹災証明書) which will certify the extent of the damage. Homeowners and residents of buildings which recieved damage may apply for this certificate starting Monday (9/10). You will need to go to one of the help desks listed below in order to apply. To apply, you must bring either one personal identification document issued by a government agency which includes a picture of yourself (drivers license, etc.), or two documents without pictures that can confirm your identity  (health insurance card, etc.). Application is free.
(If you plan to have someone apply on your behalf, you also need to prepare and submit a Power of Attorney sheet

  Help desks where you can apply for Disaster Victim Certificates: 
   Ward                                                         Help Desk                                                   Contact 
    Chuo Ward                                              Chuo City Tax Office                                 011-211-3918
    Kita & Higashi Wards                             Hokubu City Tax Office                             011-207-3918
    Shiroishi & Atsubetsu Wards                  Tobu City Tax Office                                 011-802-3918
    Toyohira, Kiyota, & Minami Wards       Nambu City Tax Office                              011-824-3918
    Nishi & Teinei Wards                              Seibu City Tax Office                                011-618-3918
    *Kiyota Ward                                           *Kiyota Ward Office                                  Call the Nambu City Tax Office
     Those who live in Kiyota Ward who's place of residence have recieved damage may apply for this certificate at the Kiyota Ward Office from 9/10 to 9/14.

Period of application:
   September 10 (Mon.) - September 14 (Fri)
  After Sept. 18: 8:45 to 19:30 
  *Kiyota Ward Office is only accepting applications from 9/10 (Mon) to 9/14 (Fri.)     8:45 to 17:15. 
**Disaster Victim Certificates are required in order to recieve various forms of aid for disaster victims. 

Public Transportation: Damage & State of Operation (as of 9/19)

JR Hokkaido 
     [Regular trains/ Rapid trains]
  Rapid Airport (Otaru - Sapporo - New Chitose Airport): running as usual
     Chitose Line (Sapporo - Chitose/ New Chitose Airport): reduced number of trains in operation from the first train   
     Hakodate Line (Otaru - Sapporo-Iwamizawa): reduced number of trains in operation from the first train
     Gakuen Intercity Line (Sapporo - Ainosato Koen mae): *reduced number of trains in operation 
     *Line between Hokkado Medical University and Shinotsukawa is postponed.
     [Limited Express trains]
  Some lines are running on reduced number of trains. 
     Please check the JR Hokkaido website for the latest information

     Hokkaido Chuo Bus
     Certain routes for city busses are still out of operation or re-routed.

     Jotesu Bus  
     Services has returned as usual.

     JR Hokkaido Bus 
     Service has returned as usual.

     Bankei Bus
     Service has returned as usual.

Okadama Airport 
    Both HAC and FDA flights are operating as usual.
    Terminal building is open as usual.
    Connecting bus service (Hokuto Kotsu and Chuo Bus) is operating as usual.
    The Sapporo Okadama Festival (planned to start 9/9) has been cancelled.

New Chitose Airport
  Both the Domestic and International Terminals are open as usual.
  Connecting busses (Hokuto Kotsu and Chuo Bus) are operating as usual.

Odori Bus Center
Operating as normal.

Subways and Streetcar (UPDATE)
Reduced service for the subways and streetcars which was in effect during the daytime on weekdays will return to normal with the end of the request for power saving from the national government. From Thurdsay, Sept. 20, all trains will run according to the normal timetables.

Medical Institutions In Sapporo
Major medical institutions in Sapporo are operating as usual. 
On duty hospitals will provide care in case of emergency.

Emergency Medical Consultation Center Sapporo
Call this number in the event of sudden illness or injury to determine whether it is best to visit the hospital or call an ambulance. Also provides info on hospitals in 6 languages (Japanese/ English/ Chinese/ Korean/ Russian/ Thai/ Malay)
TEL: #7119 or 011-272-7119 

Water Outage & Emergency Water Supply Facilities
Partial areas of Satodzuka 1-jo 1-chome thru 2-chome, Kiyota Ward are still without water. All areas outside of this have water supply returned to them. For emergency water supply, water will be provided on an indiviual basis for those who request it within the affected area (as of Tuesday 9/11)

Schools and Daycare Centers
All schools city-wide are open again as of 9/12, and will be providing school lunches.
Kid's Halls and Kid's "Mini" Halls will also be open and operating as usual.

Regarding school lunches: Even if schools are reopened, schools will be unable to provide school lunch on Monday (9/10) ad Tuesday (9/11). Whether or not lunches will be provided from Wednesday (9/12) onward is still undecided.

Call Center:
The Sapporo City Call Center is up and running!
The Call Center was down due to power outages, but as of today (Sat. 9/8) it is up and running again. The Call Center accepts consultations in Japanese, English, Chinese, and Korean. Please understand that calls or fax may not go through when the line is experiencing a high call volume.

Hours of Operation: 8:00 to 21:00  (every day, year round)
TEL: 011-222-4894

Regarding Resident Registration
Due to the power outage caused by today’s earthquake, certificate issuance for family/resident registration at the Citizens Registration Section in all ward offices, branch offices, Liaison Center, and the Odori Certificate Issuance Center will be suspended.

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