Powerful typhoon pounds southern Japan

18 September 2022, 14:04

A man on a bicycle makes his way through the rain in Miyazaki, southern Japan
Japan Asia Typhoon. Picture: PA

Typhoon Nanmadol is forecast to reach Tokyo on Tuesday.

A powerful typhoon slammed ashore in southern Japan as it pounded the region with strong winds and heavy rain, causing blackouts, paralysing ground and air transportation and resulting in the evacuation of thousands of people.

The Japan Meteorological Agency said Typhoon Nanmadol was heading north after making landfall in Kagoshima city on Japan’s southern main island of Kyushu. It was bringing with it maximum winds of 162 kilometres (101 miles) per hour, and is forecast to reach Tokyo on Tuesday.

The weather agency predicted as much as 50 centimetres (20in) of rainfall by midday on Monday, warning of flooding and landslides.

Waves batter the shore in Miyazaki, southern Japan
Waves batter the shore in Miyazaki, southern Japan (Kyodo News via AP)

It also warned residents in the affected area of “unprecedented” levels of powerful winds and waves, urging them to evacuate early.

Storm and high wave warnings were in effect in Kagoshima, where residents were told to stay inside stable buildings on the second floor or higher, if it was deemed a safer option than going to evacuation centres.

More than 12,000 people took shelter at evacuation centres. In neighbouring Miyazaki prefecture, about 8,000 people had left their homes.

A woman makes her way through the strong wind and rain in Miyazaki, southern Japan
A woman makes her way through the strong wind and rain in Miyazaki, southern Japan (Kyodo News via AP)

Local officials said several people had been injured. In Kushima city in Miyazaki, a woman was hurt by shards of glass when winds broke windows at a gymnasium. NHK national television said 15 people had been injured, citing its own tally.

Power outages were expanded across the Kyushu region as the typhoon damaged more power lines and facilities while moving north. By Sunday night, 216,450 homes were without electricity, according to Kyushu Electric Power Company.

Footage on NHK television showed a pachinko pinball parlour with part of its glass wall shattered by the gusts in the city of Kanoya in Kagoshima.

A satellite image released by Nasa shows Typhoon Nanmadol, which is approaching south-west Japan
A satellite image released by Nasa shows Typhoon Nanmadol approaching south-west Japan (Nasa Worldview, Earth Observing System Data and Information System via AP)

Elsewhere in the prefecture, an elderly woman suffered a minor injury as she fell, NHK said.

Hundreds of domestic flights in and out of the region have been cancelled and more are planned to be grounded in western Japan through until Tuesday as the typhoon heads north-east, according to Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways.

Public transportation including trains and buses in Kagoshima and Miyazaki were suspended throughout Sunday.

Railway operators said bullet trains on Kyushu island had been suspended, and more stoppages were expected in greater areas in the southwest on Monday.

By Press Association

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