Tuesday, August 16, 2022

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Torrential rain lashes northeast, central Japan

IANS | August 04, 2022 02:50 PM

TOKYO: Torrential rain lashed regions in northeast and central Japan overnight through Thursday, with local authorities in Yamagata and Niigata prefectures urging residents to seek shelter.

The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) had issued a level 5 alert, the highest on the country's disaster warning scale, for six municipalities in Yamagata, but has since downgraded the warning, reports Xinhua news agency.

The emergency warning for Niigata Prefecture, however, is still in effect, the JMA said.

Local authorities in Yamagata have also said that extensive flooding had occurred due to the Mogami River bursting its banks.

Japan's Fire and Disaster Management Agency said around 30, 000 people in Yamagata were urged to evacuate their homes by Wednesday night.

Houses were flooded, cars submerged, roads inundated and water supplies were cut off in some of the affected towns and cities, Yamagata and Niigata-based authorities said, as reported by local media.

In Yamagata, a bridge reportedly collapsed and a car was swept away in the deluge, according to media accounts in the area.

Fukushima prefecture also experienced extensive flooding, media reports said, with local authorities saying homes and roads had also been flooded.

East Japan Railway Co. said it will suspend its Shinkansen bullet train service throughout Thursday between Fukushima and Yamagata's Shinjo due to the torrential rain.

The weather agency said more heavy rain is expected in the southern Tohoku region and Niigata prefecture through Thursday noon.

It has also issued a notice of record hourly rainfall for the central prefectures of Ishikawa and Fukui prefectures.

The Ishikawa prefectural government has warned of landslides in four cities in the region, local media reported.

Weather officials have urged people to remain vigilant for landslides, swelling rivers and flooding in the affected regions.

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