13 dead, 50 missing as typhoon lashes Tokyo

2013-10-16 07:31
A fire-fighter walks over rocks fallen from a cliff over a garage and a road in a residential area in Kamakura, southwest of Tokyo. (File, AP)

A fire-fighter walks over rocks fallen from a cliff over a garage and a road in a residential area in Kamakura, southwest of Tokyo. (File, AP)

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Tokyo - A powerful typhoon triggered landslides and caused at least 13 deaths on a Japanese island, before sweeping up the country's east coast, grounding hundreds of flights and paralysing public transportation in Tokyo during Wednesday morning's rush hour.

Rescue workers found 13 bodies, most of them buried by mudslides, on Izu Oshima island about 120km south of Tokyo, police and town officials said.

Dozens of homes were destroyed, and more than 50 people are missing. "We have no idea how bad the extent of damage could be," town official Hinani Uematsu said.

NHK public television showed rescue workers struggling to dig a woman out of a heap of debris as she shrieked in pain. A rescuer told NHK that he almost walked by the spot without seeing the woman in the debris until she cried out, "Help!"

Typhoon Wipha packed winds of up to 180kph and stayed offshore in the Pacific. Dozens of schools were closed in the Tokyo area. More heavy rain and wind were forecast in northern Japan through Wednesday.

Read more on:    japan  |  natural disasters

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