Intelligent rescue systems with high information and robot technology have been expected to mitigate disaster damages, especially in Japan after the 1995 Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake. In development of robots for search and rescue tasks it is important to develop a robot which can actually work in a real disaster site. Several robots were used for the search and detection operation in the collapsed World Trade Center building in September 2001. From 2002 "Special Project for Earthquake Disaster Mitigation in Urban Areas" (5 yeras project) launched by Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Japan. It aims at significant mitigation the earthquake disaster damage on the scale of the Great Hanshin Earthquake, in big city regions such as Tokyo metropolitan area and Keihanshin area. In this paper, the problem domain of earthquake disasters and search-and-rescue processes is clarified with introducing an overview of this project.