Novel tsunami shelter boat doubles as a camper

JIJI

A construction and engineering company has developed a novel tsunami shelter boat that can also be used as a camper.

“A huge disaster happens only once in 50 to 100 years,” said Hiroshige Takano, president of the developer, Kochi Marutaka Co. “We’ve thought it necessary to make shelter boats familiar (to people) to promote the spread of them.”

The fiber-reinforced plastic boat, capable of accommodating up to six people, is 2.5 meters high, 3 meters long and 2 meters wide. It weighs about 700 kg.

With its leisure-style interior, the wheeled boat camper has enough space for two adults to lie down. If mounted with an outboard engine, the vehicle can be used for cruising.

The company, based in Kochi, sells the vehicle for ¥1.9 million, ¥1 million more than a normal tsunami shelter boat. Still, the product “is lower priced than popular campers,” a company official said.