Let these traditional Japanese dolls light the way in an emergency!

In a country like Japan where you could be hit with a powerful earthquake, typhoon, or tsunami at any time, it’s important to be prepared for any situation. Keeping an emergency kit ready at all times, maintaining a stock of bottled water and shelf-safe, easy-to-prepare meals at home, and keeping battery-powered electronics and flashlights on hand in case the power goes out are all great things to do if you live in a place prone to natural disasters.

But did you know that you can buy emergency supplies that offer both form and function? These traditional-looking Japanese Kokeshi dolls, for example, look beautiful and stylish, but also double as lighting in an emergency!

The dolls are outfitted with a sensor that can detect when the doll is sideways, which triggers an automatic LED light that shines out of the bottom. Since kokeshi dolls often topple over in an earthquake, that makes these ones pretty handy for an emergency situation.

Of course, you can also pick them up and turn them sideways yourself to activate the light. If the power goes out, you can use them as emergency lighting to help guide you around your home, or outside in case of an evacuation.

They’re powered by two AA batteries, which can run the light for 50 continuous hours. That makes them useful as flashlights even in non-emergency situations. They come in four different designs, so you can buy a set and have them all on hand in case of a blackout or a natural disaster, or, if fortune smiles on you, you may never have to use them and they can simply serve as beautiful, traditional decorations for your home.

They’re made by Shimanuki, a company that also produces many other kinds of traditional decorative items like daruma, accessory boxes, and handkerchiefs as well as other accessories themed on Japanese traditional arts. You can buy these flashlight kokeshi on Shimanuki’s online shop for 10,780 yen (US$102.33) each, though it seems only three of the four are available right now.

Unfortunately, due to popular demand following the strong earthquake that hit Japan on the weekend, all three available varieties are currently sold out, so you’ll have to keep checking back with the site to buy one. In the meantime, why not check out our other tips for disaster preparedness to keep you safe in an emergency?

Source: Shimanuki via Hachima Kiko
Images: Shimanuki

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