Res­cues un­der­way as mul­ti­ple nat­u­ral dis­as­ters rock Ja­pan

Baltimore Sun Sunday - - NATION & WORLD -

TOKYO — He­li­copters plucked peo­ple from their flooded homes on Sun­day as res­cue ef­forts went into full force in wide ar­eas of Ja­pan, in­clud­ing Tokyo, af­ter a pow­er­ful ty­phoon un­leashed heavy rain­fall, leav­ing at least four dead and 17 miss­ing.

Ty­phoon Hag­ibis made land­fall south of Tokyo Sat­ur­day and moved north­ward. More than 100 peo­ple were also in­jured in its wake, ac­cord­ing to pub­lic broad­caster NHK, as the num­bers kept grow­ing.

News footage showed a res­cue heli­copter hov­er­ing in a flooded area in Nagano pre­fec­ture where an em­bank­ment of the Chikuma River broke. The chop­per plucked those stranded on the sec­ond floor of a home sub­merged in muddy wa­ters.

A stretch of Fukushima, in the city of Date, was also flooded with only rooftops of res­i­den­tial homes vis­i­ble in some ar­eas. Parts of nearby Miyagi pre­fec­ture were also un­der wa­ter.

The Tama River, which runs by Tokyo, over­flowed its banks.

Au­thor­i­ties warned of a risk of mud­slides. Among the re­ported deaths were those whose homes were buried in land­slides. Other fa­tal­i­ties in­cluded peo­ple who got swept away by rag­ing rivers .

Some 286,000 homes were with­out elec­tric­ity. Sev­eral train ser­vice in the Tokyo area re­sumed early morn­ing, although oth­ers were un­der­go­ing safety checks and were ex­pected to restart later Sun­day.

The au­thor­i­ties had re­peat­edly warned Hag­ibis was on par with a ty­phoon that hit the Tokyo re­gion in 1958. The ty­phoon six decades ago had left more than 1,200 peo­ple dead and half a mil­lion houses flooded.

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