is fairly well equipped
to notify citizens of impending doom
, the Fire and Disaster Management Agency is taking another step to preparing its rescue forces for anything in times of emergency, and the forthcoming water jet cutter
should help slice through debris without the risk of starting a fire in the process. Due to a railway disaster in April of 2005 which forced rescuers to find an alternate way of cutting metal with gasoline sloshed about, the water jet cutters were moved up in priority, and now the powerful streams can output a high-pressure blast of water / sand in order to make a "1.5-centimeter cut through a 2-centimeter-thick steel plate in just a single minute." Of course, the biggest boon here is the device's inability to spark a fire, but the pressure cutter can also be used in instances where flammability isn't an issue, and it has already been demonstrated to local reporters last week. Although we're not sure just how soon these slicers, along with high-powered "blowers" to whisk away harmful fumes, will be put into action, they'll be hitting the fire departments of Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka, Fukuoka, and Sapporo first.