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Quake shock absorber maker says products may have been used nationwide

51 Comments
By Kiyoshi Takenaka and Elaine Lies

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51 Comments
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Simply amazing that the company would do this for something as important as earthquake safety. Japan is corrupt, there is no other way to explain all these admissions by major companies. They care only about profits and not about people potentially dying due to the fake product safety.

So the question is why does the government let companies test their own products? The government is equally at fault in this case.

24 ( +24 / -0 )

Ha ha, Fukuwa at Nagoya Univ played down the problem! Says that falsification of the data was not a major issue! Same could be said of the nukes in Fukushima before 3/11 right? Everyone played down the issue. If the data was falsified, what else was falsified? What about the testing methodology, what about the actual installation? It goes on and on, it's not just about the data, and if investigators stop there, then they should also be held responsible for not going to the heart of the matter. So is this going to delay the completion of the Olympics venues? Made in Japan....right. Those days are gone.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

Japan seriously needs to make examples of this corporate (and gov't) corruption and throw whoever's responsible in the clink and throw away the key. Enough is enough already.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

Well, they apologised and I think that's the most import thing.

With deep bows, not run of the mill bows.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

KYB officials, who bowed deeply at the beginning of a news conference

Well, they apologised and I think that's the most import thing.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

Welcome to Japan, The land of the falling sun.

9 ( +15 / -6 )

Give them 6-8 years of kneeling seiza in a yellow square painted on a cold concrete floor to think about it.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Just looking at all those microphone cables in front of that picture make me think Japanese have no idea what there doing. You never see that in the west, that is another big hazard waiting to happen.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Shame, shame to Abe's govt, shame to liars, fakers, and anyone who believed liars.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

The problem is not necessarily with the quality of these dampers, but rather with this company starting to use materials that weren’t certified. They claim that the new material has similar properties as the certified materials. For whatever reason, money pinching perhaps, they didn’t test the new materials and didn’t have them certified, which is a legal requirement.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

"KYB officials, who bowed deeply at the beginning of a news conference..."

Oh, phew! Well, then, in that case, the buildings are suddenly safe, and these men's wrongdoings can be dismissed without any further suffering.

That's all that will happen. They aren't going to be punished unless word of this gets out and it hurts tourism somehow. Certainly the government won't care one wit about the locals even if THEY raise a fuss.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Nobuo Fukuwa, director of the Disaster Mitigation Research Center at Nagoya University, played down the falsification of data, saying variations in shock absorber quality was not a major issue...the most commonly used shock absorbers those used below ground - could be exchanged relatively easily.

I don't think this is as bad as skimping on structural material such as rebar inside columns or failing to sink pilings down to bedrock leading to a building's sinking like that skyscraper in San Francisco. The Tokyo sky tree made it just fine through the 2011 quake without failing. I dare say that replacing these bumpers and pistons is going to be expensive, though. I wonder if KBY corp. is going to survive financially.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Don't the people of Japan ever get tired of seeing these bowed heads? None of this is sincere considering it could all have been avoided if those in charge actually cared about integrity

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I've been following this fraud and not once have they given any specifics as to what the actual problem is. They keep stating "falsified quality data", which means what exactly? Have they been made out of substandard materials? - Kobe steel? Have they been poorly manufactured? Are they dangerous and likely to fail? It's just another company to add to the extensive and ever growing list of unscrupulous Japanese companies lying and ripping people off.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

When are people going to wake up to the fact that this sort of lying is business-as-usual for large Japanese corporations, which are largely allowed to police themselves? There are literally dozens of examples of this in the past decade - and because the politicians are in the pockets of industry and the bureaucrats can't admit it is happening, people's lives are put at risk - from failing nuclear power plants to collapsing highway tunnels to this.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

KYB officials, who bowed deeply at the beginning of a news conference

We're just missing the "I was drunk and don't remember"

5 ( +7 / -2 )

That wiring scheme above looks like more of a hazard than the fake-data shock absorbers probably are.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Wouldn’t it be ironic if the bad shock absorbers were made with faulty Kobe Steel and installed in the factories where the falsified Nissan and Subaru cards were built?

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Made in Japan.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I suspect the company will go bankrupt. Then, taxpayers will have to foot the bill. Maybe the 10% consumption tax can help pay for the replacements, which can then line the pockets of more construction companies.

But, since they bowed, it's water under the bridge.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

These are incredibly serious revelations. As a foreigner working in Japan I know the risk of Earthquakes but always felt relatively safe as I trusted Japanese design and technology, and Japanese society to build earthquake proof buildings. I live on the ninth floor of a relatively new mansion. Now I am not so sure I am safe. Prison is too good for those who falsify data that could have a massively damaging effect on other peoples lives. This story should be pursued until every faulty part has been replaced and the situation is resolved. Also, until the culprits are in prison.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I only think one thing, honestly: German and Japanese products were always considered high quality, and, according to my experience, they actually still are. But in the last years generic data falsification scandals destroyed their reputation (I just read an article that says German carmaker industry could end up like Detroit). All these scandals are making the US happy, together with American sanctions in their trade war both against Europe and Japan.

Really interesting. Oh, and of course, Moody's just cut further Italy rating, implying American debt is better. Okay.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

This is really getting out of hand. Japan needs to start throwing these people in prison and start rewarding whistle blowers. Its the only way to get these companies to act like a decent human adult should act in this day and age.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

people and especially earthquake insurance companies should be able to sue

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Oh what a tangled web (of microphone wires) we weave

when we lie, cheat and deceive

3 ( +4 / -1 )

the photo is brilliant. Could be a stand-in for the Olympic flag or any government event

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Ok, so they falsified their verification of their falsifications and are also apologizing for that. They should just make these an every week event, like marriage halls.

Next

2 ( +3 / -1 )

And there it is! The deep bow. Phew! I'm really glad these executives faced 'justice' for lying their way to huge profits. I guess their... 'punishment' .. will be a good deterrent for other companies making products that might be thinking to choose profits over public safety...

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I can smell the recent free trade agreement with the European Union linked to this leaking.

E.U. wants to enter Japan's infrastructure market.

Someone needs to warn Abe no country around the world signs a free trade agreement without having an intelligence agency.

German companies will smash Japanese infrastructure companies.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I think I am going to start a business.

How to teach company executives the proper way to make a sincere bow without hurting one's back. Extra credit lessons would be to teach them how to make a single tear run down their cheek on command.

I would be a rich man indeed!

Here's to the 2020 Olympics when their shock absorbers fail during a mid games earthquake, and all the participating countries sue the living daylights out of the Japanese government.

Cool Japan indeed!!!!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Wait for it ... NOTHING will come of this. Just like all the other scandals here. Just bow deep and return to business as usual.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

90 degree angle bows, probably the same angle that the buildings will end up at.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

And we are to believe that the Olympic facilities will be constructed according to relevant safety standards? Radiation from the Fukushima facility is not yet under control and these types of incidents are common in Japan. I don’t think Japan has shown that it is responsible and accountable enough to hold the Olympics but of course too much time and money is at stake to reverse that now. Let us all pray! And if that doesn’t work...it appears a good “bow” solves most problems!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

has "shaken" confidence in Japan's manufacturing prowess. pun intended?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Money and power corrupts! Big companies obviously have too much power to self regulate.

It’s good when you find out more and more each day how much of your buildings, politics, healthcare (nonsense scores right) and other pillars are influenced by core corruption. It’s the only way to make change, and Japan’s biggest assets is its quality and now we have to be able to change and grow too.

NOT just bow and try to get away with it again.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I would like to know which data has been falsified, then we can determine if the products need to be replaced, and which items. And who will be replacing them IE which company, does any one else make them? and of course, it begs the question who will pay for this, ultimately it should be down to the main manufacturer KYB Corp. Its about high time some of these directors went to prison or, and, were heavily fined, not only have they brought shame on them selfs, there company, but mainly on Japan, its saying to the rest of the world, were not trust worthy, we build poor quality products. I wonder how many more Japanese companies are in the dark, and hiding secrets and falsified data.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Quake shock absorber maker says products may have been used nationwide

Are they coming clean on any ones that were exported?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

These deep bows have certainly absorbed some of the shock.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

With little or no oversight..... what the heck do you expect. Power and lack thereof also corrupts.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

the photo is brilliant. Could be a stand-in for the Olympic flag or any government event

It's not that it's a brilliant picture, its just a very bad crop job by whoever took or posted it. The bad editing job just adds to the madness.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Why are does this always happen? Why does no one go to jail or even fined. They all belong to the Abe boys club

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Doesn’t this include all the new tower apartments on Yokosuka Naval Base?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@BackpackingNepal: Germany and Japan are already for some years on America black list in the trade war. The same can't be said for South Korea, because a) overall its economy is still small, and b) the US need to keep South Korea strong or it would end easily in Chinese hands.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Incapacity to criticize people leads to that sort of situation where there are grey areas where no one as to take responsibility for . Japanese products are not guaranteed by third-parties. Speaking by experience.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Faked data? In Japan? Nahhh, never... ;-)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

People in the past used to say Japanese quality meaning it was good. The way things are going with these scandals, it may end up being used as a euphemism for bad or shoddy.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

OK.... but how bad is the situation? They're admitting to falsifying data but how far off is the data? Are these "shock absorbers" total crap or will they do like 70% of what they were designed / falsified to do? What is the urgency of the situation..... should some of these buildings be closed until corrections are made? I know I've posed a lot of questions but heck, shouldn't there be questions. Shouldn't the government assess the situation, shouldn't these shock absorbers that have been sold immediately be tested to at least get an idea of how bad it is and shouldn't people know the risk.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

I didn't think my comment would have got thumbs up. Maybe I was too subtle.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

A lot of people (professors) are playing down the impact and I agree that the full story hasn't been investigated but if this is an earthquake resistance system performing to required standards v. 70 or 80% of required standards I doubt there are going to be a great many residents that will notice the difference.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Nobuo Fukuwa, director of the Disaster Mitigation Research Center at Nagoya University, played down the falsification of data, saying variations in shock absorber quality was not a major issue.

"Some fluctuation won't have an impact on the building's safety and peoples' lives, so not that much worry is needed," he told Reuters, adding that the most commonly used shock absorbers those used below ground - could be exchanged relatively easily.

So it's not as bad as what some people commenting on this article would have you believe.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

But 7/10 items Made in Japan are still high quality compared to the Worlds' 5/10, except Germany and South Korea not far behind.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

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