It is designed to assist global firms with the planning of factories, offices or other facilities at overseas sites by providing evaluations and other information on hazards and natural disasters.
The company said that more and more companies are building factories and offices outside their home country. At the same time, the increasing frequency of natural disasters such as earthquakes and floods has made these companies eager for information on potential risks associated with particular sites. Unfortunately, information on hazards and natural disasters comes from numerous scattered sources and the scope of the data a company can gather on its own is limited.
In response, Shimizu has developed the Shimizu Global Hazard Evaluation System. This system allows users to view the information needed for site-specific hazard assessments by selecting any location on Google Earth and pulling up the information from the internet and from Shimizu’s own databases.
These hazard evaluations give projections on seven types of risk that could cause serious damage: earthquakes, strong winds, floods, landslides, forest fires, volcanic eruptions and lightning. Firstly, the system draws up the most recent information on earthquakes, floods, and other natural disasters from 16 databases maintained by 11 key research institutions. The data obtained is converted and displayed on a Google Earth map to generate hazard maps for each type of hazard, alongside up-to-date records of natural disasters.
These hazard evaluations culminate with an overall site evaluation by Shimizu specialists, who assign the site one of four grades, based on three- to five-tier risk grades assigned by the system for each of seven risk areas. These grades are supplemented by observations and commentary, where appropriate. This entire process can be completed in just 30 minutes. Shimizu has already been awarded a construction project in Indonesia thanks to a proposal incorporating results from the system.
Shimizu plans to use the system to rapidly deliver hazard evaluations to its clients and to offer business continuity planning solutions to expand orders awarded by global firms.