Because of the proximity of the Cascadia Subduction Zone lurking off the Oregon Coast, thoughts about tsunami survival are on many North Coasters’ minds. And now a new contender has entered the tsunami pod pool – a fiber-reinforced plastic FLOATING SHELTER that can hold up to 20 people.

The Japan Times featured a story about the prototype (http://tinyurl.com/tsuamibus), which was created by the race car producer TAJIMA MOTOR CORP. It’s pictured in a photo by the Kyodo News Service that ran with the story.

The bus-shaped container, which is about 6.5 feet wide and 19 feet long, has small windows, a battery and race car seatbelts. If you want one, you’d better start saving your pennies, as Tajima plans to begin marketing the shelter for around $3.5 million later this year, “after adding the final touches.”

Apparently a civic-minded corporation, Tajima, which is based in Iwata, Shizuoka Prefecture, started working on the shelter last year to protect its employees. With good reason – their facilities are a too-close-for-comfort 550 yards from the ocean.

— Elleda Wilson

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