The Japanese government has just recently released the results of a simulation that shows just what could happen to Tokyo should Mount Fuji erupt. This specific project was organized by none other than the Central Disaster Management Council which was in charge of running models that predict eruptions at different vents in 92 locations on Mount Fuji.
The existing danger is beyond the lava which could reach the outer edges of Tokyo itself but from the ash that could contaminate the air for a number of days, or even weeks!
The worst case scenario
Looking at the worst case scenario, there is a possibility that more than 17.3 billion cubic feet of volcanic ash might fall over Tokyo as well as the surrounding areas according to Asahi Shimbun. This would create about 10 times the amount of debris that previously had to be cleared from the city itself after the horrible Tohoku earthquake and tsunami happened back in 2011.
The reports state that the first signs of falling ash could be felt in as small as only three hours and the city would then have to be shut down within 24 hours because of the piling ash. A single one-inch layer of ash would make the roads unsuitable for every single two-wheel drive because of the lack of friction it would bring to the roads.
Even a light ashfall amounting to one-fifth of an inch could already lower visibility up to the point that driving would become impossible! The rail service would then have to be suspended since the ash on the tracks would make it unsafe to operate.
Other effects of this eruption
Airports would then become extremely strict since even 0.08 inches of the volcanic ash would then make all of their runways unsafe for planes to land. The ash would then disrupt the mobile phone towers which could cause power outages and even render thermal power plants useless with just two inches of this ash.
The worst effect of all would still be that the population would then start to experience severe respiratory damages especially for those who have already been experiencing asthma. Wooden homes would then be treated with structural damage since the weight of the accumulated volcanic ash is still unexpected.
Previous eruptions that have caused massive damage
The very last major eruption happened way back 1701 and was known as the Hoei eruption that took place right after the Edo Calendar period. The eruption was so massive that about 28.2 billion cubic feet of its volcanic ash was raining down for about two weeks and was able to travel to the furthest stretch of 62 miles.
The Council has stated that these simulations are here to help the local government in its preparation for the next disaster in order to minimize the risk and any excess and unnecessary damage. According to Toshitsugu Fujii from the University of Tokyo, "A mistake in the early response could leave tens of millions of people stranded, and it may not be possible to distribute supplies,"