Emergency information and help
119 is for emergencies such as fire or quick-response care; 110 is to call the police to report crimes and accidents. The Tokyo police have 24/7 English-language support, too: call 03 5463 6000 if you’re living in one of Tokyo’s central 23 wards, or 042 334 6000 if you’re in one of Tokyo’s outer suburbs.
For English-language help, try the Japan Helpline at 0570 000 911. It offers 24/7 English-language emergency services assistance.
For emergency medical interpretation services, call 03 5285 8181. The hotline offers interpretation and information in English, Chinese, Korean, Thai and Spanish daily from 9am to 8pm.
Websites & guides
Japan Meteorological Agency
The JMA has reliable, up-to-date earthquake, tsunami or weather information in both English and Japanese. You'll find weather predictions and warnings here, plus data on how strong the earthquake was in your specific area. JMA data, which is based on the Japan Earthquake Early Warning (EEW) system, is the first point of reference for many news outlets, and many apps use the EEW to update their own information.
JMA offers recent earthquake information in 14 different languages: English, Chinese (simplified and traditional), Korean, Spanish, Portuguese, Vietnamese, Thai, Indonesian, Tagalog, Nepalese, Khmer, Burmese and Mongolian.
Tokyo Bousai Guide
Designed and distributed by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, a Japanese hardcopy (or five) of this disaster prevention, preparedness and reaction guide was distributed to every household in 2015. It's truly a comprehensive book, so give it a read. For the English version, check out the PDF edition online. It might be lengthy (300+ pages), but it contains interesting, important and life-saving information. Check out the Survival Tips section in particular, which includes how to keep yourself warm using old newspapers, how to make a stove from cans, and more.
The national broadcaster NHK's multilingual website has information in 20 languages, while info is also disseminated through the English-language NHK World news and radio channels.
Tokyo Metropolitan Government Disaster Prevention
Essentially a web version of the Bousai Guide, this slightly clunky site does have quite a lot of useful info on it. You might just have to dig a little to find it.
If you're with one of the big Japanese carriers such as Docomo, AU or Softbank, your phone will blare out a warning message in case of a truly strong earthquake, tsunami or even a missile overhead, but it’s worth getting one of these apps to make sure you don’t miss anything.
Yurekuru Call (Android)
This English-language earthquake app sends out a signal when one has been detected by JMA's EEW system, depending on the settings you've chosen. The map shows you how strongly the earthquake was felt in various regions (partially based on user responses), but the really nifty thing is its Sonae page, with a wealth of disaster preparedness and emergency tips, including for floods, fires and tsunami. Note there is an iOS version of the app, but it was recently renamed Prep and is only available in Japanese at the moment.
Yahoo! Bousai Sokuho (Yahoo!防災速報) (iOS/Android)
Probably one of the most used apps in Japan, this one tends to be fast and accurate, and includes things such as tsunami and missile alerts, but is only available in Japanese.