Every year the Japan Weather Association stages a public campaign aimed at reducing heatstroke victims during the hot, humid summer.
This year, the firm will focus on a new group of people seen as being particularly vulnerable: foreign tourists.
The Tokyo-based association has grown particularly concerned as more and more foreign tourists have been coming to Japan in recent years.
The number of overseas arrivals surged to 28.7 million last year from 8.35 million in 2008 according to the Japan National Tourism Organization, a state-backed body promoting inbound tourism.
“Heatstroke can be prevented with correct information and the right actions,” said Nobumichi Furuichi, a division director at the Japan Weather Association.
“This year, the focus of our countermeasures against heatstroke will be non-Japanese people in Japan and foreign travelers who are planning to travel to Japan,” he said.
The association has prepared leaflets in English explaining first aid procedures for those suffering from heatstroke, as well as how to call for emergency services, which will be given out at various information centers as part of the association’s Heatstroke Zero campaign.
In addition, signboards urging foreign visitors to stay out of the sun, stay hydrated, and rest frequently will be set up at venues hosting major events, the association said.
A total of 621 people died of heatstroke in 2016 in Japan, according to the Health, Labor, and Welfare Ministry.
A governmental working group was also established in 2015 to inform inbound tourists of the dangers of heatstroke, in anticipation of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The association’s tips and information in English on heatstroke can also be found online at www.netsuzero.jp/en.