Disasters & Accidents

Death toll hits 8 as Japan torrential rains continue

Tokyo, Aug 18 (EFE).- Torrential rains that have hit Japan since last week raised deaths to eight and kept the alert for overflowing rivers, floods and landslides in much of the country’s south.

The Japan Meteorological Agency again alerted the population Wednesday of the persistence of a stationary front leaving heavy rains that could continue causing more damage in the archipelago as they move north.

According to the forecast, it is expected the front will move east and north Wednesday night and, potentially reaching Hokkaido, the archipelago’s northernmost island, before losing strength Thursday.

Heavy rains began late last week and damaged more than 4,000 homes and buildings, mainly on the island of Kyushu, in the south-west of the country, and in the central prefecture of Nagano.

Search and rescue efforts for several missing persons continue and several rivers in Kyoto and Gifu have overflowed.

Several roads and railway infrastructures, mainly in the west and south, have also been affected.

Rainfall has caused rivers to flood into residential areas. Persistent rain has softened the ground and authorities are asking for caution against the possibility of landslides on the slopes near houses.

There was a magnitude 4.2 earthquake Wednesday morning in Shobara, a city in Hiroshima prefecture, where rains have caused serious damage and authorities have warned of the possibility of even small precipitations or other earthquakes causing landslides.

The meteorological agency predicts that up to 200 millimeters of rain will fall in Kyushu until Thursday morning, up to 180 millimeters in the Shikoku region and up to 150 millimeters in the central area of ??the country. EFE


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