The organisers of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics have plans to cancel the competitions of the event if there is a strong earthquake or any other natural disaster, as reported by Mainichi newspaper. Even though the latest outbreak of the novel coronavirus COVID-19 has spread all across the south Asian country affecting many, the organisers have been firm on their beliefs and decisions that the quadrennial sporting event will take place and start on the scheduled date which is July 24.
Officials from Japan and at the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have again and again reassured the public that the event will take place as per the schedule, but the news organisation stated that there are event-specific plans for natural disasters as the island nation regularly suffers from them.
Competitions would be cancelled if the venues were hit by a quake
Under the plans, competitions would be cancelled if the venues were hit by a quake measuring an upper-6 or 7 on Japan's intensity index, which runs to 7, the newspaper said, citing unidentified sources involved in the organising committee. Unlike a magnitude reading, which measures the inherent strength of a quake, intensity measures the amount of shaking felt at a given place.
Japan often experiences earthquakes, but an upper-6 is one where it is impossible to stand, windows are likely to break and most unreinforced concrete-block walls collapse. In addition, the Mainichi said, the plans call for halting events if the authorities issue a 4 or higher on Japan's 5-point disaster-warning system for a typhoon or other disaster. The Tokyo 2020 press office did not respond to a request for comment. A powerful typhoon forced the cancellation of three matches in last year's Rugby World Cup.
(With agency inputs)