NE Japan Earthquake Day 7: System Crashes Render Mizuho Bank ATMs Out of Order Three Consecutive Days; Miyagi to Discuss Temporarily Moving Refugees Out of the Prefecture

System Crashes Put Mizuho Bank ATMs Out of Commission Three Consecutive Days
Yomiuri Shimbun: みずほ銀行ATMが停止、再びシステム障害

At a press conference on the 17th, Mizuho Bank President Satoru Nishibori apologized on behalf of the company for system crashes that have put its automatic teller machines out of commission three consecutive days, saying, “We apologize. We should be holding firm in the midst of this national crisis, but instead we have failed.”

A dramatic rush of withdrawal orders in the days since the earthquake has overwhelmed the system’s processing capacity. The company is aiming to use the three-day weekend to perfectly restore its network.

ATMs which had come online this afternoon crashed again at 5:40 PM, and it’s possible that teller window and machine transfers will not be available on the 18th.

The “Concentrated Registry Exchange” system which handles spot monetary transfers has been processing more data than it was designed for. This traffic jam of data disrupted some window transfers on the 15th, and on the 16th ATMs temporarily shut down. ATMs also broke down across the country on the morning of the 17th.

It’s possible that in order to put 440,000 disrupted transfers worth 5.7 billion yen first in line, some staff will be pulled from teller windows.

The company says it is “investigating” the overload at the heart the problem. Some are saying this is the reason certain donations to earthquake relief funds haven’t gone through.

If the giant bank with 25 million accounts doesn’t quickly restore its system, the struggling Japanese economy will suffer another blow. Meiji University Professor Yoshiharu Oritani, an expert on the financial system, says that “if accounts cannot be settled, the bank will lose trust, which could set off a chain reaction of instability in the long term.”

Miyagi to Discuss Temporarily Moving Refugees Out of the Prefecture
Yomiuri Shimbun: 宮城県、被災者の県外一時移住を検討へ

On the 17th, Miyagi began discussing temporarily moving earthquake refugees outside the prefecture.

The prefecture does not have the means to provide emergency housing for all its victims, but a “Greater Kansai Alliance” of Kyoto, Osaka, and five surrounding prefectures in Western Japan has requested to shelter victims inside their public housing, and an option Miyagi has now put on the table.

2000 public homes in Osaka, 600 in Hyogo [which includes Kobe], 200 in Kyoto, and 120 in Wakayama were among the shelters offered by the Greater Kansai Alliance on the 16th. Hyogo can also hold 1500 people inside nursing homes.

At a meeting at the disaster response headquarters today, Miyagi Governor Yoshihiro Murai said that “we cannot hold all the refugees in our housing here, so we must consider moving them farther away.” The prefecture has asked the Tokyo Prefab Construction Association to build 10,000 prefab homes inside the prefecture, and it is discussing borrowing private apartments and hotels, but because it will take months for the prefab homes to be completed, the prefecture is struggling to house its 220,000+ refugees.








(2011年3月17日18時03分 読売新聞)





(2011年3月17日17時55分 読売新聞)

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