Building of temporary housing begins for central Japan quake victims

Building of temporary housing begins for central Japan quake victims
Photo credit: Pixabay

Local authorities on Friday began construction of temporary housing units for people whose homes were damaged by a powerful earthquake that struck central Japan on New Year's Day., Kyodo reports.

The Ishikawa prefectural government is building 115 makeshift houses across four locations in Wajima and Suzu, two cities hit hard by the magnitude-7.6 temblor, and is aiming to have them completed in a month.

Due to severe damage to roads in the area, around 2,500 people remain cut off in the prefecture on the Sea of Japan coast. The death toll from the disaster stood at 215 as of Friday morning.

Of the 215, 10 were not directly killed in the earthquake but are believed to have died due to health issues, in some cases associated with the stress of being evacuated, according to the prefectural government.

There are 37 people still unaccounted for, while the number of evacuees totaled 24,038, as of Thursday.

Temporary houses are provided by local governments free of charge for disaster-stricken people based on the Disaster Relief Act, giving them somewhere to reside for up to two years or until they find alternate housing.

Temporary housing units are either prefabricated or wooden one-story homes equipped with toilets, bathrooms and kitchens and will be available in multiple floor plans for singles and families.

The prefecture also plans on Monday to begin construction of a total of 60 temporary houses in the towns of Noto and Anamizu.

Some municipalities have begun accepting applications from people hoping to find shelter in existing private rental housing, with their rents covered by local governments.

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