Typhoon Jebi hits Japan, seven dead

Typhoon Jebi hits Japan, seven dead

Japan has been hit by its strongest typhoon in 25 years, causing at least 7 deaths and 200 injuriesTyphoon Jebi made landfall in western areas,...

Tokyo: Japan has been hit by its strongest typhoon in 25 years, causing at least 7 deaths and 200 injuries. Typhoon Jebi made landfall in western areas, bringing heavy rain and reports of winds up to 172km/h (107mph). In Osaka Bay it swept a tanker into a bridge and in Kyoto parts of a railway station roof came down. Officials ordered more than a million people in affected areas to evacuate their homes amid warnings of high waves, flooding and mudslides.

It has already left tens of thousands without power and authorities have urged people to move to safety. One of Japan’s largest airports, Kansai International, was closed indefinitely by damage. The bridge that links the island airport with the mainland was hit by a storm-driven tanker ship on Tuesday, shearing off one chunk and dislodging a section of roadway from the rest of the bridge. At the airport itself, one runway was under water and one terminal’s basement was flooded, an airport spokesman said.

The airport, near Osaka, serves as one of the nation’s main gateways for Asian tourists. Japan Airlines said 150 passengers and 600 staff were still at the airport as of Tuesday night local time, and there was no immediate way to evacuate. All Nippon Airways said 65 customers and 290 employees were at the airport. Public broadcaster NHK said a total of 3,000 people were stranded there. A terminal for low-cost carriers escaped major damage but its runway was closed, the spokesman said, adding that it is too soon to say when the airport might reopen. Japan had been preparing for days for Typhoon Jebi, which carried peak winds of some 130 miles an hour and brought heavy rains to much of central Japan.

No trains or cars were on the bridge when it was struck, and NHK said that by late Tuesday all 11 crew members aboard the ship were evacuated from it without injury. Nationwide, NHK said, at least seven people were killed and more than 300 injured as the typhoon knocked down trees, flooded coastal areas and damaged buildings. Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways, the nation’s two biggest carriers, both canceled hundreds of flights, most of them domestic, while the bullet train linking Tokyo and Osaka was temporarily shut down.

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