Thousands stranded in Japan floods

Thousands stranded in Japan floods

Thousands stranded in Japan floods

Written by Staff Writer

10 Sep, 2015 | 12:19 pm

One person was missing after river banks burst in cities north of Tokyo following days of heavy rain. Ninety thousand people were ordered to evacuate, and the numbers are expected to increase.

Disaster prevention officials of the affected regions said the flooding was so widespread they have yet to grasp the full scale of the situation, Japanese media added.

National broadcaster NHK said more than 500 millimetres (20 inches) of rain fell in parts of Ibaraki and Tochigi prefecture, north of Tokyo, in the last 24 hours.

Days of rain pummelled much of Japan in the aftermath of Typhoon Etau, now downgraded to a tropical depression.

Rivers, such as Kinu, which runs through the region, have burst their banks and inundated many homes and towns in the area. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe warned of more “unprecedented heavy rains”.

“There is concern that the region will see unprecedented heavy rains. The government will work as one to prioritise the safety of the people and do our best to prevent any further disaster,” on Thursday, September 10.

Public broadcaster NHK ran continuous warnings for all residents near rivers in the area to evacuate to higher grounds or to seek refuge on the second floor of homes, if venturing outside proved dangerous.

One prefecture, Ibaraki, requested a dispatch of Japanese Self Defense Forces to help in rescue operations, after rains triggered landslides in the mountainous areas. At least one woman was reported missing after her home collapsed in a landslide.

Japan’s Weather Agency warned that the heavy rains were moving slowly north, and the same flooding and landslides could be seen later on Thursday or Friday September 11 in prefectures there.

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