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2 dead, 11 missing as powerful typhoon rips through Japan

Typhoon in Japan. Photo by the Kyodo. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

Pan Pacific Agency | COMMUICATION AGENCY FOR PACIFICA REGIONS

TOKYO, Oct 13, 2019, Kyodo. At least two people have died while 11 are missing as a massive typhoon lashed Japan including the Tokyo metropolitan area on Saturday, with many rivers overflowing into residential areas across a wide area of the country, reported the Kyodo.

More than 90 people were injured across the country, according to a Kyodo News tally based on information provided by rescuers and other authorities.

Over 6 million people across Japan’s main island of Honshu were advised to evacuate, with train operators suspending most services and airports shut down in the metropolitan and surrounding areas.

Evacuation advisories have been lifted by early Sunday in Tokyo and most of central and eastern Japan.

The Japan Meteorological Agency has issued the highest warning on its one-to-five scale for Tokyo and the prefectures of Gunma, Saitama, Kanagawa, Yamanashi, Nagano, Shizuoka, Niigata and Fukushima.

Amid heavy rains, some dam operators have authorized water releases as an emergency measure to avoid possible dam bursting, in a move that could raise the amount of water further downstream where rivers are already overflowing or about to do so.

A tornado hit part of Ichihara, Chiba Prefecture, and destroyed 12 houses and damaged over 70 others. The prefecture near Tokyo had been hit by widespread power outages due to another strong typhoon in September.

Local officials said a man in his 50s was found dead in an overturned car, as the tornado likely caused his vehicle to roll over.

In Tomioka, Gunma Prefecture, a man died after houses were swept away by a landslide, police said.

According to a local coast guard, a Panamanian cargo ship with 12 crew members aboard is believed to have sunk in Tokyo Bay. Three crew members were rescued by early Sunday.

As of 2 a.m. Sunday, Typhoon Hagibis, meaning “swift” in the Philippine language Tagalog, was traveling 40 kilometers off Soma, Fukushima Prefecture. It had an atmospheric pressure of 970 hectopascals at its center and was packing winds of up to 180 kilometers per hour.

After passing through the Tokyo metropolitan area and part of northeastern Japan, the typhoon is now off the Pacific coast and moving away from the Japanese archipelago.

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