In Japan’s Shizuoka region, about 90 kilometres from Tokyo, a mudslide landslide after days of torrential rain swallowed and destroyed an unknown number of homes on Saturday. According to local sources, at least 2 people were killed, and about 20 people are missing.
The dead were found in the port of the city of Atami. The authorities believe the bodies were carried away by the mudslide.
Television images showed the current sweeping away some buildings and burying others in Atami. People and emergency services can also be seen running away as the mudslide came down a hillside road.
“The condition of 19 people is unknown,” a Shizuoka Prefecture official in charge of disaster relief after the landslide said. The local government has requested military aid for a rescue mission. Several homes have been swept away, and 200 homes in the area were left without power, he added.
Most of Japan is currently in the rainy season, which often causes flooding and landslides, forcing people to flee their homes.
In the 48 hours to midnight Saturday, 313 millimetres of rain fell in Atami. That is much more than the monthly average of 242.5 millimetres for all of July, according to the Japanese public broadcaster NHK.
The high-speed Shinkansen train service between Tokyo and Osaka was temporarily suspended due to the heavy rain. At the same time, other local trains in the affected areas were also shut down, according to the railway companies’ websites.