Sunday, March 27, 2011
Whatever you do, don't panic! DON'T PANIC!!!
With things as stable as they are now in the Tokyo area, I think you all are getting bored with these earthquake related posts, but there are so many bizarre events and stories that came out of this whole event that deserve to be told...
The last two weeks, quite a few foreign companies temporarily evacuated some functions to the West Japan area out of nuclear fear (there is something about the words "nuclear meltdown" that seem to trigger panic and prevents some normal sensible people to actually check on facts before they act). While the Japanese companies soldiered on as close to normal as was possible, with the main difficulty being the "planned" rolling blackouts.
In my little company as well, emergency evacuation plans were drafted out and for reasons I'm not quite sure of, I saw the "evacuate Tokyo now" message that had been drafted out by the people in charge of the employees safety, to be distributed immediately in case of a perceived need for everyone to run away. The message looked something like below (although in Japanese):
EVACUATE TOKYO NOW!!!
THIS IS AN EMERGENCY EVACUATION ORDER, THE AREA IS NOT SAFE, EVACUATE TO SAFETY IMMEDIATELY!!!
Please remember to act in a calm and orderly manner
As you might understand, I am particularly fond of the "calm and orderly manner" part which was added as an afterthought in considerably smaller letters compared to the panic inducing evacuation message. It's during situations like this you can see who you can really rely on during an emergency...