Rescue teams dispatched 18,121 times in Naha during 2015
Naha Fire Department rescue teams were dispatched 18,121 times to a missions during the year 2015 that is the highest ever. That means that each of the fire department’s six rescue teams was dispatched on 3,020 missions in 2015, which makes the Naha teams the 2nd busiest in the nation, next to Amagasaki City in Hyogo Prefecture. To alleviate the pressure, Naha City plans to add one more rescue team within 2018.
According to Naha Fire and Disaster Management Bureau General Affairs Section, the number of rescue dispatches has increased because the population is increasing, and the missions have more than doubled over the past 30 years. The representative says additional reasons for the increase is “perhaps partly because the increase in the number of tourists, and the aging population. However, there is a variety of reasons, and it’s difficult to pinpoint a specific one.” To add to above, tasks of firemen have been increasing since they now attach more importance on fire prevention measures.
The number of firemen in the Naha Fire Department in 2015 was 271. Only the minimum number of members can be deployed to the site, and when there is any emergency, off-duty staff has to work to fill in.
A Fire Department representative said, “Naha is the only city that has 200-level rescue staff among all the core cities in Japan. We would like to increase our staff more.”