Heat, floods, quakes: Tokyo 2020 preparing for any disaster

  • Thursday 14, March 2019 10:38 AM
Sharjah24 – AFP: Cyberattacks, terrorism, earthquakes and heatwaves: Tokyo 2020 organisers are hoping for the best but bracing for the worst and making contingency plans for several possible catastrophes during the Games.
Clean, virtually crime-free Tokyo has been spared the terror attacks that have hit many Western cities in recent years, and is considered a relatively safe bet for the Games it is often ranked as low-risk by insurance and risk-management firms.

But that security goes out of the window when it comes to hosting the Greatest Show on Earth, says Shiro Kawamoto, counter-terrorism expert and professor of risk management at Nihon University.

So Tokyo is pulling out all the technological stops to bolster safety for example, in an Olympic first, introducing a facial recognition system for volunteers.

Organisers are also bracing for a cyberattack similar to that which blighted the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics opening ceremony, where internet and wifi access were brought down.

The government has set up an elite unit of police and defence ministry experts to counter a possible cyber threat.

For terrorist attacks, Tokyo has not experienced a large-scale atrocity since the Aum Shinrikyo doomsday cult released Sarin gas on the subway in 1995, killing 13 people and injuring dozens more.