Death Toll Exceeds 100 After Heavy Rainfall Slams Japan

Fire fighters helps residents to get off boats in Kurashiki Okayama Prefecture

Fire fighters helps residents to get off boats in Kurashiki Okayama Prefecture

Helicopters and boats are being used to rescue people still trapped by flooding in areas like Okayama Prefecture, where Kurashiki is located.

Houses are partly submerged in water after heavy rainfall hammered southern Japan.

At least 100 people have been killed, with many still unaccounted for.

Almost 2 million people have been asked to evacuate the affected areas.

A couple was found dead in a farmhouse buried in a mudslide in Kagoshima prefecture Monday, while earlier a woman who was reported as missing after getting trapped in her vehicle was found dead, Kyodo news service reported.

Roads were closed and train services suspended in parts of western Japan.

The automaker, which suspended operations at several plants last week, said the halt would continue at two plants until Tuesday, as it can not receive components, although both units were undamaged.

According to NHK public television, the death toll stood at 126 by Tuesday morning, with another six people in a state of cardiopulmonary arrest - a term Japanese authorities often use to describe those who have not been officially pronounced dead by a doctor.

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"The frequency of heavy rain-linked disasters is on the rise, and we are facing the world where the rules learnt from your experiences no longer apply", Ohno said. Rivers overflowed, turning towns into lakes, leaving dozens of people stranded on rooftops. Many waited hours to be rescued. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe reportedly mobilized 54,000 personnel for search-and-rescue efforts and set up an emergency task force for the first time since the Kumamoto earthquakes in 2016.

Japanese authorities issued evacuation orders to around five million people during the worst of the rains, but the orders are not mandatory, and many ignored them. Hiroshima prefecture has been severely affected by rains. "This is a situation of extreme danger".

Rescue workers and troops have been struggling in the mud and water to save lives.

"So many people called. Some people have been isolated, calling for rescue".

Separately, ruling Liberal Democratic Party Secretary-General Toshihiro Nikai told reporters after meeting Abe on Monday that cancelling the trip was "unavoidable" in light of the disaster, which inundated large swaths of western Japan, the Kyodo news agency said.

The toll has risen steadily since then, and conditions have made rescue operations hard, with some desperate citizens taking to Twitter to call for help. Critical infrastructure has been hit, including railway tracks.

Japan's government set up an emergency management centre at the prime minister's office and some 54‚000 rescuers from the military‚ police and fire departments were dispatched across a wide swath of south-western and western Japan.

"There are still many people missing and others in need of help", BBC quoted him as saying.

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