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View Full Version : Massive Earthqake in Japan- Will this affect Worlds?(threads merged)



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portia
03-12-2011, 12:10 AM
Well, if the shoe fits.

That was original.

bek
03-12-2011, 12:11 AM
I say leave it up to Japan. I highly doubt the Japanese government, the JSF, or the ISU would all say YES! to Worlds if it hampered any part of the relief effort, or endangered the skaters.

But while I have never been to Japan before, I know that many countries have managed to have first class relief efforts, and hold events. Don't see why the Japanese can't. Was the Olympics cancelled because of the earthquake in China. Of course China is a much bigger country, the earthquake I believe was much farther away, and I think there was far more time lapsed. But still. Its all about whether the Japanese can feasibly do it or not. Obviously worlds though is the absolute least priority.

If worlds has to be cancelled or postponed, I will totally see why. Its not like people here are demanding worlds happen.

Oh and my total condolences to the Japanese people in this horrible tragedy.

4rkidz
03-12-2011, 12:13 AM
I think in reality what may happen is that the individual ISU countries will make the decisions made on what is in the best interest of their skaters. BUT if there is any country in the world that can pull this off its Japan.. having said that it is early days. So sorry to hear about some of the Japanese skaters family members who have died, hope any FSU folks in Japan or with family their are also safe and please know all our thoughts and hopes for a full recovery are with you .. :(

oh2tango
03-12-2011, 12:20 AM
In the aftermath of Japan's devastating earthquake and tsunami, the U.S. Department of State issued a travel alert urging "U.S. citizens to avoid tourism and non-essential travel to Japan at this time."
The advisory goes on to say that "strong aftershocks are likely for weeks following a strong earthquake such as this one" and that "many roads have been damaged in the Tokyo area and in northern Japan."
Thousands were left stranded in airports overnight, and according to FlightAware.com more than 650 flights were cancelled. In northeast Japan Sendai Airport was completely covered in water.
But less than 24 hours after the tsunami, both of Tokyo's airports, Narita and Haneda, are open and flights are beginning to resume. However, roads in Tokyo have been heavily congested because both the metro and train system remain closed.
Despite the recent events both tour companies ABC News spoke with said they had received few cancellations and plan on continuing tours next week.
InsideJapan Tours currently has 70 clients in the country and sends 5,000 people to Japan every year.
"There is lots of travel in the coming weeks because we are getting into cherry blossom season," said Mathew Eccles, U.S. Branch Manager. "Everything can change rapidly, but at the moment we are going to continue our tours as planned. There is no reason for people to change their plans."
All 70 of InsideJapan's clients were uninjured during the earthquake and the company says that although it may not seem like it most of the country has not been affected by the disaster and the majority of destinations they visit are completely unharmed.

aka_gerbil
03-12-2011, 12:20 AM
Sad news. Fumie Suguri has just tweeted about her grandfather's death. Mirai is having trouble getting into contact with hers.

Oh no. I'm so sorry for Fumie and her family, and I'm hoping and praying that Mirai's relatives are ok.

marbri
03-12-2011, 12:23 AM
I wonder if it might help some people to take a deep breath, count to 10, and let the Japanese deal with what's happening today and tomorrow. Once they deal with the important stuff they can spare a second to wonder if they should go ahead with some sporting event.

Doubletoe
03-12-2011, 12:24 AM
Without mixing in, I think the ISU is just being supportive. They haven't made any final decision. They can't - they don't have enough information nor do they have a crystal ball.

Look at it a different way:

What does Japan need in order to fulfill their committment to host Worlds?

. Venue
. Security
. Transportation and Lodging
. Athletes
. Spectators

Of these five things, the only one that's a known "CHECK!" is the venue.

We'll just have to wait and see.



Exactly. I don't mean to sound cold, but I think a lot of people are overreacting based on a few stories and pictures they see on the news, none of which are of Tokyo. Based on reports coming out of Tokyo and the live streaming Japanese news (TBS, Fuji, etc) that I've been watching all day, the damage in Tokyo is minor. The major issue in Tokyo has been that so many people take the trains and subways everywhere and they were all stopped so that tracks and overpasses could be inspected for safety. Does this natural disaster in Sendai mean that every sporting event, concert, conference, etc. in Tokyo should be canceled? After Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, should every sporting event in the United States have been canceled?

The Japanese organizers of this event have commitments they want to uphold to fans, international broadcasters, etc., and will lose a lot of money if they have to cancel or postpone the event, so my guess is that they are going to do everything possible to go ahead with it, as long as transportation resumes to normal in and out of Tokyo (including the airport). There's not much they're going to be able to do to help the Sendai relief efforts by canceling an event in Tokyo, IMO.

Vash01
03-12-2011, 12:25 AM
Sad news. Fumie Suguri has just tweeted about her grandfather's death. Mirai is having trouble getting into contact with hers.

Is this due to the earthquake/Tsunami or was he sick? In any case, sympathies to Fumie's family. I hope Mirai's family is OK.

Asli
03-12-2011, 12:25 AM
I'm curious how those insisting the ISU should cancel the event think that would in anyway impact the recovery efforts of the quake? The resources consumed by the skaters would be a drop in the bucket and would have zero impact. I haven't seen any of the Japanese posters calling for a cancellation. It's far too early to say what the situation will be within 10 days. A lot of posts here have been reactionary rather than thoughtful or knowledgeable. The ISU will do what the JPF and local authorities think best.

Exactly. The Japanese Federation is in the best position to decide what to do. The earthquake is devastating, but halting every activity in the country won't benefit anyone. :(

Figure skating is a hobby for many of us, so maybe we find it shocking to think about fun when the devastation is so great. However, for the Japan Figure Skating Federation and others involved in organising the Worlds, this is not frivolity, it is not a hobby. It is their job, their livelihood. It is also their duty, it is serious business!

The World Championships is an economic activity for the federation, for the sports complex, for the hotels, for the travel agencies, for the TV channels who have bought the rights, for the ISU who has sold the broadcast rights and of course for the skaters and coaches.

When a national disaster of this scale takes place, one can criticise people for being unnecessarily frivolous, but one can never criticise them for doing their job.

If the Worlds are cancelled, the Japanese federation will have to reimburse all tickets that have been sold abroad and at home. They probably can't get out of their contract with the sports complex and will have to pay the rent anyway. The ISU will face complications because the broadcast rights have already been sold. If the venue is intact, the airport is functional and the infrastructure is suitable, what legal point will they have against the broadcasters or insurers? Yes, the Japanese federation will not have to pay accomodation for the skaters, but at the same time, the local hotels and restaurants shall lose income. So overall, what is the gain to the local economy and what is the advantage to the rescue efforts if the Worlds are cancelled?

ioana
03-12-2011, 12:25 AM
Sad news. Fumie Suguri has just tweeted about her grandfather's death. Mirai is having trouble getting into contact with hers.

I hope this didn't happen because the hospital where he was affected. I know some areas had some problems with their electricity and she posted on fb the family was worried about him. Very sad for her & the rest of the family, in any case.

victoriaheidi
03-12-2011, 12:26 AM
:( So sad for Fumie's loss. (((hugs for the Suguri family))) And I hope that Mirai's family is all ok. (((hugs for the Nagasu family)))

Back to the topic at hand, though, why is it that every time someone says that s/he thinks the event should be cancelled, everyone complains, but every time someone says the event should happen, it goes virtually unnoticed? Can we all just admit that we have NO say in the outcome, express our opinions, and agree to disagree?

jlai
03-12-2011, 12:27 AM
Thank you, Asli

allezfred
03-12-2011, 12:28 AM
I hope this didn't happen because the hospital where he was affected. I know some areas had some problems with their electricity and she posted on fb the family was worried about him. Very sad for her & the rest of the family, in any case.

There are cases when large earthquakes hit where the elderly and infirm have heart attacks due to the shock.

BBI*CEO
03-12-2011, 12:28 AM
SkateCanada Skate Canada Twitter

Article in the @globeandmail quotes Skate Canada CEO - Tokyo still planning to host world figure skating championships

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/more-sports/tokyo-still-planning-to-host-world-figure-skating-championships/article1939033/

mmot
03-12-2011, 12:28 AM
I understand both opinions and sentiments, but it is too early to have a heated discussion about whether it should or not to go ahead with the Worlds.

I believe the ISU and the JSF have a duty to update what their current assessment is regarding the possibility of holding the Worlds as scheduled, as many federations and skaters all over the world are wondering whether they should carry on preparing or not.

I too have been following NHK news all day, albeit being away from home in the different country, and it seems that the government have not yet been able to assess the real damages caused, as things are just unfolding in front of our eyes as we write - let alone how long it takes, how much effort and resources it require, even what can be done to deal with the aftermaths.

In such circumstances, all the ISU and the JSF can do is to check the minimum requirements - whether the venue and official facilities are intact and the public infrastructure in Tokyo will be capable of providing for the Worlds, and then report that currently they've facility to hold the Worlds and the preparation will go on, unless further difficulties will be identified. It's been less than 24 hours since the disaster first struck. It's too early to make the final decision, but they must let the rest of the world know what's going on.

Besides, there are so many sponsors and investors involved in hosting the Worlds in Japan, so I presume it cannot be decided whether to go ahead or not by the JSF single-handedly. I am not surprised if those sponsors and investors in Japan also need more time to assess the situations and say yes or no to whatever the JFS might propose.

As Japanese myself, I am very touched by all concerns expressed by the posters here. I appreciate both sides of opinions as both derive from your sincere concerns for the welfare and sentiment of Japanese people, and belief in their resilience. Thank you.