Gas Mask Island: Inside The Place Where Residents Are Required To Carry At All Times
For the most part, the island of Miyake-jima is like many of the beautiful enclaves of Japan. Its flora and fauna are awe-inspiring, and its people are friendly and warm. They just have to obey a particular rule: Whenever an air raid siren blares, everyone has to put on their gas mask. Images of what we know as "Gas Mask Island" are arresting, but its story is even more fascinating.
"Gas Mask Island" Is Home To An Active Volcano
Before it became home to the world biggest post-apocalyptic flash mob, Miyake-jima was simply a beautiful place to live and visit. Its most devastating inhabitant is Mount Oyama, an active volcano that's erupted multiple times over the last 500 years. Mount Oyama is such a known quantity that you can find mention of it in written histories of the island that reach back as far as the Nara period (710—784 BCE). In 1940, lava flow from the volcano killed 11 people, and eruptions occurred in 1962 and 1983. It was just the beginning.