「ほっ」と。キャンペーン

津波と消防団―251人の教訓から学ぶ

2011/07/22
-- The Asahi Shimbun, July 21
EDITORIAL: Lessons must be learned from deaths of community firefighters.
津波と消防団―251人の教訓から学ぶ

Sachiko Tanaka is the leader of a Sendai group of families of suicide victims, called Ai no kai."
 田中幸子さんは、仙台市で自死遺族の集まり「藍の会」を主宰している。

She receives requests for counseling also from the parents of people who died in the catastrophic earthquake and tsunami in March.
震災でわが子を亡くした親からも相談が来る。

A woman in the city of Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture, told Tanaka that her son, a member of the community fire company, was swept away by the tsunami while trying guide people the way to a safe shelter.
 宮城県石巻市の母親は、消防団員の息子が、避難の誘導中に津波にのまれたという。

People tell me that he was a great person who saved many lives," the woman said.
 「多くの命を救った立派な息子さんですねと、皆さんおっしゃってくださる」

But I wish he had not become a hero by dying. I wanted my son to be alive instead of saving other people."
 「でも、英雄になんかならない方がよかった。ひと様を助けるより、息子には生きててほしかったのに」

The woman spoke in a hoarse subdued, tearful voice.
 押し殺した涙声になる。

Tanaka has received calls from some other women in the same situation.
同じ立場の母親からの電話が、ほかにも何本かあったという。

Community firefighters are part-time local government employees who perform fire suppression and other related emergency services for the local communities.
They usually have other jobs.
 消防団員は地域で仕事をしながら活動する非常勤の地方公務員だ。

The Great East Japan Earthquake left 251 community firefighters dead or missing in the three prefectures of Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima.
震災では岩手、宮城、福島3県で251人が死亡あるいは行方不明になった。

The number is far larger than the death tolls for full-time firefighters and police officers, both around 30.
消防署員と警察官の犠牲がともに約30人なのと比べて際だって多い。

Since most part-time firefighters are men in the prime of their working lives, many young children are now fatherless.
 働き盛りの男性が中心で、多くの子どもが残された。

In a normal year, only several community firefighters are killed in the performance of their duties across the nation.
毎年、全国で殉職する消防団員は数人ほどだから、

The mutual aid program for these firefighters is therefore not sufficiently funded to pay due compensation to the families of those who died in the disaster.
今回の事態に共済制度の遺族補償が十分に支払えない。

A way should be found to increase the amount the bereaved families will receive.
何らかの遺族支援策で補えないものか。

One community firefighter died as he went to shut the floodgate of a tide embankment just as the tsunami was approaching.
 津波が迫る防潮堤に水門を閉めに向かった人。

Another perished while striking the alarm bell of a fire tower to warn residents to evacuate.
避難を呼びかけるため、やぐらで半鐘を鳴らし続けた人。

Many members of community fire companies lost their lives to save others.
多くの団員が誰かを助けるために命を落とした。

Let us express our respect and gratitude for these brave men.
 私たちは敬意と感謝を忘れない。

But we should do more than simply applaud them as heroes.
そのうえで、決して英雄視するだけで終わってはならないと考える。

Toshitaka Katada, a professor at Gunma University known as an expert in practical disaster prevention education, warns that the tendency of Japanese to praise people who risk their lives in performing their duties is dangerous.
 実践的な防災教育で知られる群馬大の片田敏孝教授は、危険を顧みずに職務を全うすることを是とする風潮は危うい、と指摘する。

Katada raises the question of whether sufficient measures were in place for the safety of these firefighters.
彼らの安全を確保する方策は十分だったのか、という問題提起だ。

Community firefighters of today use cellphones as the main tool for communications among them.
 最近の消防団は、携帯電話で連絡を取り合うことが多い。

Were the victims alerted to the fact that projected tsunami heights had been raised while the mobile services were disrupted?
携帯が通じないなか、津波の予想高が引き上げられたことは伝わったのか。

It is urgently needed to take steps to improve the communications equipment and systems used by community firefighters.
通信装備などの改善を急がねばならない。

Local fire companies in the hard-hit Sanriku region have been conducting tsunami drills every year.
 三陸地方の団員は毎年、津波訓練を積んできた。

When a tsunami warning is issued, community firefighters in the region are supposed to monitor the sea immediately outside the areas expected to be submerged.
浸水想定区域のすぐ外側で海を監視し、

They are also supposed to be the last to evacuate.
逃げるときはしんがりを務める。

Are these rules reasonable?
そんな想定は適切だったか。

There were residents who didn't heed the warnings to evacuate from community firefighters.
 消防団が呼びかけても逃げようとしない住民がいた。

It is essential to improve disaster prevention education for citizens, especially for people who are not sufficiently informed of dangers related to earthquakes and other disasters.
そうした人々も含めた防災教育の見直しが欠かせない。

The Fire and Disaster Management Agency plans to start fresh debate on the roles and duties of community fire companies in times of major disasters.
 総務省消防庁は、大災害時の消防団活動のあり方を議論していく予定だ。

Close and detailed scrutiny of the damage suffered by community fire companies in the disaster-hit areas will be a good start.
まずは被災状況の詳細な検証が出発点になる。

For long, there have been serious shortages of people willing to serve as community firefighters.
 かねて消防団員のなり手不足は深刻だった。

The March disaster has cast a fresh spotlight on the importance of the role of community firefighters as a key force in disaster prevention.
大震災は地域の防災の担い手としての重要性を改めて教えてくれている。

That's why we need to learn lessons from all these tragedies.
 だからこそ、悲劇から学ばなければならない。
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2011-07-23 02:24 | 英字新聞

<< VALID SEO もんじゅ―開発はあきらめる時だ >>