Tokyo 2020 cheating: Company admits manipulating earthquake safety data

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Japanese hydraulics company KYB has admitted that several Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games venues are among the 1,000 buildings for which earthquake safety data has been manipulated.

The company has confessed the violations following the media reports that the data for hydraulic oil dampers installed to reduce vibrations during earthquakes has been doctored. KYB further stated that the data was altered systematically to prevent any delays in construction schedule.

The Tokyo-based KYB firm and its subsidiary have though assured that the buildings will still withstand tremors measuring up to seven on the Japanese seismic scale.

However, some Japanese officials have accused the company of “cheating” in order to put monetary gains ahead of peoples safety in a highly volatile seismic zone.

KYB president has reportedly apologized for the safety manipulations and promised to replace all the falsified products. The company is involved in building venues for the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo

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The seismic analysts have last year expressed fears that there is a 70% threat of an earthquake of 7-class magnitude hitting directly beneath the Tokyo Metropolitan area in 30 years.

KYB has been heavily criticised by Tokyo Mayor Ichirō Matsui. “It shows a decline in corporate ethics,” Matsui has reportedly told Japanese press agency Kyodo News. “I want (the company) to recognise that data falsification could put people’s lives at risk.”

Meanwhile, the Japan Government is setting up an External Commission to explore the problem, even as KYB has promised to replace the affected devices.

In a nation respected for its high ethics, the present case is a first instance of cheating for monetary gains.

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