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Japan looks for missing after typhoon, warned of mudslides

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Japan looks for missing after typhoon, warned of mudslides

Yuri Kageyama, Associated Press

Published October 13, 2019 at 11:31 am

TOKYO – Rescuers dug mudslides and searched near swollen rivers on Monday after a typhoon caused serious damage in central and northern Japan, leaving dozens of people dead or missing.

Typhoon Hagibis unleashed torrential rain and strong winds on Saturday that left thousands of homes on Japan's main island flooded, damaged or depleted.

Authorities warned that more landslides are possible, with rain forecast for the affected area during the day Monday.

The Kyodo News service, gathering information from a large network, counted 35 typhoon deaths, with 17 people missing. The official Fire and Disaster Management Agency count was 19 dead and 13 missing.

Hagibis has dropped record amounts of rainfall for a period at some points, according to weather officials, causing many rivers to overflow in Japan.

Some of the muddy water in the streets, fields and residential areas has diminished. But many places remained flooded, with houses and roads around it covered with mud and littered with broken pieces of wood and debris. Some normally dry places still looked like giant rivers.

People queuing for morning soup in the evacuation shelters expressed concern about the houses they had left behind. Survivors and first responders will also face a colder climate, with northern Japan cooling this week.

More than 20 rivers had flooded. Some rivers overflowed at various points.

The damage was serious in Nagano prefecture, where a Chikuma embankment broke down.

Rescue efforts were in full swing with soldiers and firefighters sent from all over Japan. Helicopters pulled those trapped upstairs and roofs of submerged houses.

Areas in Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures in northern Japan were also heavily flooded.

In these areas, rescuers paddled in small boats to each semi-submerged house, calling anyone trapped.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. said 56,800 homes are still without electricity on Monday in Tokyo and its neighboring prefectures. Tohoku Electric Power Co. said 5,600 homes were without power in Miyagi, Iwate, Fukushima and Niigata.

Tokyo's Tama River also overflowed, but the damage was not as great as in other areas.

Much of life in Tokyo has returned to normal. There were people circling the city, trains circling, and empty store shelves as people stocked up.

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