The most vulnerable cities to earthquakes in Japan Skip to main content

The most vulnerable cities to earthquakes in Japan

Japan is one of the most seismically active countries in the world, and many cities in the country are vulnerable to earthquakes. Some of the cities that are considered to be at high risk for earthquakes include:

  • Tokyo earthquake risk: Tokyo is near several major fault lines. The Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923 reminds us that Tokyo, the populous capital, is at high risk for earthquakes.
  • Yokohama earthquake risk: Yokohama is the second-largest city in Japan and is located just south of Tokyo. The city is also located near several major fault lines and is considered to be at high risk for earthquakes.
  • Osaka earthquake risk: earthquake risk level: Osaka is the third-largest city in Japan and is located in the western part of the country. The city is also located near several major fault lines and is considered to be at high risk for earthquakes.
  • Nagoya earthquake risk: Nagoya is the fourth-largest city in Japan and is located in the central part of the country. The city is also located near several major fault lines and is considered to be at high risk for earthquakes.
  • Hokkaido earthquake risk: Hokkaido, Japan's northernmost island, is vulnerable to earthquakes due to its geological features, centralized power system, and aging infrastructure.
  • Izu earthquake risk: Izu, Japan's volcanic archipelago, is vulnerable to earthquakes due to its proximity to the subduction zone, aging infrastructure, and heavy wood frame construction.
  • Fukuoka earthquake risk: Fukuoka, Japan's southernmost major city, is vulnerable to earthquakes due to the Kego Fault, aging infrastructure, and older buildings with wooden frames.
  • Sendai earthquake risk: Sendai, Japan's sixth-largest city, is vulnerable to earthquakes due to its proximity to the Japan Trench, liquefaction-prone soil, and aging infrastructure.
  • Chiba earthquake risk: Chiba, Japan's largest coastal prefecture, is vulnerable to earthquakes due to its proximity to the Nankai Trough, liquefaction-prone soil, and aging infrastructure.
  • Niigata earthquake risk: Niigata, Japan's seventh-largest city, is vulnerable to earthquakes due to its proximity to the Chuetsu Earthquake Zone, aging infrastructure, and liquefaction-prone soil.

In terms of financial losses, the recent earthquakes in Japan have caused significant damage. The 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, for example, caused an estimated $235 billion in damage, making it one of the most costly natural disasters in history. The 2016 Kumamoto earthquake, which struck the island of Kyushu, caused an estimated $9 billion in damage.

Project Earling analyzes more than 3 trillion data records every day to provide high-risk seismic time-window alerts to all high-risk regions in northern and central Japan. These alerts can be received up to a few days before the next unusual earthquake.

Currently, one of the best use case of the alerts is transferring financial risks associated with major earthquakes in the worst-case scenario. However, as trust in the models generated by Earling increases, they may eventually be used for evacuation purposes. Submit to receive a free subscription.