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Newsletter : Assisting Various Disaster Readiness and Response Activities --Initiatives Leveraging the Products, Personnel, and Networks Developed through Our Businesses--

October 25, 2023

From rumbling earthquakes to raging fires, there are all sorts of natural disasters that can threaten to upturn people's day-to-day lives and it is important to be prepared so that when they do happen, we can protect our own lives, the lives of loved ones, minimize the damage caused, and begin working on recovery and reconstruction as soon as possible.
The Yamaha Motor group calls on the technologies, products, human resources, networks, and more that we have accrued through our businesses for various initiatives, from proposing various products for disaster response to supporting the work performed by first responders.

■Aiding Disaster Relief Efforts with Technology for Personal Mobility

The X-QUICKER is a next-generation firehose cart using our electric power-assist technology and can be folded down for compact loading into a fire engine.

If a fire requiring extinguishing requires 10 firehoses-each weighing approx. 6-8 kg-along with other necessary firefighting equipment, the total weight can reach up to 120 kg. In places with narrow roads or locations otherwise inaccessible by a full-size fire engine, firefighters have to transport hoses and equipment closer to the fire on foot to put it out-and every second counts.
 The X-QUICKER is a next-generation firehose cart developed by Yamaha Motor Engineering Co., Ltd. that installs two high-output electric motors to the cart body to provide an electric power-assist. Leveraging the electronic control technology from our eBikes and electrically power-assisted wheelchairs, the engineers developed a control system specifically for the X-QUICKER.
 Another example is the RS-13 rescue boat designed for saving people during floods and other water-related disasters. The vessel is equipped with five internal bulkheads, has a buoyancy exceeding 500 kgf, and a retractable front gate for pulling in those in need of rescue from the water's surface. The strong FRP hull and a flat interior also allows people using wheelchairs to board while remaining seated.
 By listening to the needs of first responders and disaster response teams, we adapt and apply the technologies we have developed through various personal mobility pursuits to offer a range of products aiding rescue and relief efforts.

The RS-13 enables rescue personnel to pull in someone without needing a slope.

■Helping Elevate the Riding Skills of Disaster Response Teams

Members of SCOUT, Shizuoka City's off-road motorcycle team, were dispatched to help with the recovery efforts following the Great East Japan Earthquake in March 2011.

Yamaha Motor's involvement in disaster and rescue efforts is not limited to just providing technologies and products. The Yamaha Riding Academy (YRA) is a riding safety program run worldwide by Yamaha Motor and its experienced personnel and instructional know-how are put to use by providing training to improve the riding skills of motorcycle-based disaster response teams.

YRA instructors cooperate in holding joint training drills with SCOUT, the Japan Ground Self-Defense Forces, fire departments, and other bodies.

The Great East Japan Earthquake that struck in 2011 was an unprecedented disaster that claimed the lives of over 15,000 people and more than 2,500 people remain missing. SCOUT is Shizuoka City's off-road motorcycle unit, which takes advantage of bikes' innate mobility to gather information from the ground at disaster sites. The team is composed of city employees and their duties include not only preparing for disasters that may hit their own city but they were also deployed to areas hit by the aforementioned 2011 disaster and the Kumamoto earthquakes in 2016, where they assisted with various relief efforts.
 However, to be able to put that mobility to full use when an emergency occurs, regular training and preparation is key. Having the riding skills to safely navigate roads littered with debris is a given, but so is having the knowledge for properly using rescue equipment in the field, as well as skills for performing motorcycle maintenance and repairs. We cooperate by dispatching YRA instructors to help hold training drills so that members can acquire such know-how and improve their skills.

|Field-Born|Vol. 7 - Protectors and Preparation
Shizuoka City's SCOUT off-road disaster response motorcycle unit receives regular training with Yamaha Riding Academy instructors to help them safely carry out their tasks at disaster sites.

Message from the Editor
The usefulness of motorcycles during disasters in Japan became apparent after the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake in 1995. Volunteer riders from all over the country rushed to the area, making use of motorcycles' mobility amidst broken roads and traffic jams to help collect information and transport supplies throughout the disaster-stricken areas. The media coverage of their efforts shot the public's view of motorcycles upwards, and much like SCOUT, many disaster response motorcycle units were formed all across Japan following this event. In the "Raising Public Awareness of Disaster Risk Reduction" section of the government's White Paper on Disaster Management (2023 edition), disaster preparedness-which rose immediately after the Great East Japan Earthquake-has been on a downward trend over the 12 years since. Yamaha Motor has proposed a new approach to disaster readiness called "Prep through Play," in which people use our products for everyday fun in ways that also prepare them for emergencies. Being used to using equipment for disasters and networking on a regular basis is sure to come in handy should they ever actually be needed. Now is as good a time as any to reassess your own preparedness for disasters with your family and community.


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Corporate Communication Division, PR group: +81-538-32-1145

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