Clean-up, rescue efforts in Japan as typhoon toll nears 70

A flooded Shinkansen bullet train rail yard is seen following Typhoon Hagibis in Nagano
Trains in a Shinkansen bullet-train rail yard in Nagano, Japan, sit in floodwater due to heavy rains caused by Hagibis on October 13, 2019. Image credit: Kyodo / Reuters Full story:


Flooded bullet trains show Japan’s risks from disasters

The typhoon that ravaged Japan last week hit with unusual speed and ferocity, leaving homes buried in mud and people stranded on rooftops.

But nothing spoke more of the powerlessness of modernization against natural disasters than rows of bullet trains deluged in floodwaters in Nagano, a mountainous region to the northwest of Tokyo.

Japan’s technological prowess and meticulous attention to detail are sometimes no match for rising risks in a precarious era of climate change.

Experts say they also instill a false sense of security in a country inured to danger by the constant threat of calamitous earthquakes, tsunami and volcanos…


Clean-up, rescue efforts in Japan as typhoon toll nears 70

Rescuers in Japan worked into a third day on Tuesday in an increasingly desperate search for survivors of a powerful typhoon that killed nearly 70 people and caused widespread destruction.

Hagibis slammed into Japan on Saturday night, unleashing fierce winds and “unprecedented” rain that triggered landslides and caused dozens of rivers to burst their banks.

By Tuesday morning, national broadcaster NHK put the toll at nearly 70, with more than a dozen missing. The government’s confirmed death toll was lower, but it said it was still updating its information.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said there was no plan to slow rescue operations, with around 110,000 police, coast guard, firefighters and military troops involved…



Japan’s PM pledges to act after homeless men denied typhoon refuge

The Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe, has promised to take action after two homeless men were refused access to a shelter as Typhoon Hagibis barrelled into Tokyo.

The powerful storm hit Japan’s main island on Saturday with strong winds and heavy rainfall that caused more than 200 rivers to overflow, leaving thousands of homes flooded, damaged or without power.

At least 53 people died, according to government figures, but the Kyodo news agency has put the death toll at 69.

The two men had sought refuge at a shelter in Taito, northern Tokyo, but were turned away because the shelters were meant for residents of the ward, a Taito spokesman said.

Abe told parliament the men should have been given refuge. “Shelters are supposed to be set up for the…


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