According to a report by the Japanese News Agency on the 24th, record heavy snow this winter has caused a total of 70 deaths in 10 prefectures in Hokkaido, Tohoku and other regions of Japan.
It is reported that most of the causes of death were falling from the roof during snow removal. Among them, 48 people over the age of 70 died in such accidents, accounting for 70% of the total.
This situation is mainly due to the concentration of short-term snowfall, while many areas are sparsely populated and seriously ageing. Therefore, some local government leaders appealed, “When sweeping snow, it is better to have more than two people.”
According to the Japan Meteorological Agency, unlike the winter of 2020, which has less snowfall, this winter has more snowfall.
According to the statistics of local governments from December 14 last year to January 20 this year, Niigata Prefecture (14 people) have the highest number of deaths due to snowsweeping, followed by Akita Prefecture (13 people), Hokkaido (10 people) and Yamagata Prefecture (9 people).
In addition to falling from a height and dying, it is also common to be involved in a snow remover and to be unwell during snow removal.
Government officials in a Japanese place said that the early and heavy snowfall this year was also one of the causes of many deaths. Four people died of snow sweeping in Yuze City, Akita Prefecture.
The relevant person in charge of the government said: “The snowfall this winter is very special. Even if you entrust a professional snow sweeping company, it will take a month to wait, so many old people can only sweep the snow by themselves.” In addition, a person in charge of the Comprehensive Disaster Prevention Department of Akita Prefecture hinted that the COVID-19 epidemic is also one of the reasons for many elderly people to sweep snow and die.
“At the end of the year and the beginning of the year, many people are unable to return to their hometowns, resulting in no one to sweep snow in their hometowns. With an aging population, fewer people can help sweep snow, which has become a social problem.