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Typhoon kills 19, causes flooding and landslides across Japan

By TAKEHIKO KAMBAYASHI | dpa | Published: October 12, 2019

TOKYO (Tribune News Service) — Typhoon Hagibis wreaked havoc in wide areas of Japan, leaving at least 19 people dead and more than a dozen missing as record rains flooded rivers and triggered landslides, local media reported on Sunday.

More than 140 people were injured as Hagibis, one of the most powerful typhoons to hit the Tokyo region in decades, made landfall in the Izu Peninsula, hitting the capital Saturday evening.

One person was dead and seven others were unaccounted for as a 12-crew Panamanian cargo ship sank late Saturday in Tokyo Bay, where it was anchored, Kyodo News reported.

Four other crew members of the 1,925-ton ship were rescued Sunday morning, the report said.

Rescue operations are also under way in many parts of the country which were hit by landslides and widespread flooding.

Torrential rains inundated at least 14 rivers in the north-east and in the regions of Kanto and Koshin, according to broadcaster NHK.

The bank of the Chikuma River collapsed, causing massive flooding in residential areas in the cities of Nagano and Chikuma with authorities estimating that some of the areas may see floodwaters of up to 16 feet deep, Kyodo News reported.

The typhoon caused a total of 48 landslides in 12 prefectures, the government said.

An emergency rain warning was issued for 13 prefectures on Saturday, including Tokyo and Shizuoka, government spokesman Yoshihide Suga told a news conference.

This year’s 19th typhoon “brought a disaster to extremely broad regions,” Suga said on Sunday.

About 376,000 households remain without power and 14,000 without water supply, Suga added.


The government is “doing its utmost” to engage in search-and-rescue operations and recovery efforts, he said.

A tornado touched down in the city of Ichihara, east of Tokyo, early Saturday, killing one person, injuring eight others and destroying 12 houses, Kyodo said.

Overnight, more than 4.4 million people were ordered to evacuate their homes in eastern and northeastern Japan, including 910,000 in the city of Kawasaki, as the storm brought heavy rains and powerful winds, inundating residential areas.

In Tokyo, about 80,000 residents spent the night at emergency shelters amid fears of massive flooding.

About 800 flights for Sunday have been cancelled following the cancellation of more than 1,600 flights on the previous day, while many train services in the Tokyo region remained suspended.

As of noon local time, the typhoon weakened to an extratropical cyclone over the Pacific.

Rugby World Cup organizers have cancelled a match between Namibia and Canada in the northern Japanese city of Kamaishi on Sunday, because of Hagibis, while three other games will go ahead as scheduled, officials said.

The game at Kamaishi Recovery Memorial Stadium is the third match to be called off due to the storm.

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©2019 Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH (Hamburg, Germany)
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Surging waves hit against the breakwater and a lighthouse as Typhoon Hagibis approaches at a port in town of Kiho, Mie prefecture, central Japan Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019.
TORU HANAI/AP

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