Typhoon Talas: Japan searches for missing dozens

Road washed away by flood water in Nachikatsuura, Wakayama Prefecture, central Japan Damaged roads have made it hard to reach those in need of help

Related Stories

Japanese rescue teams are continuing the search for dozens of people missing after Typhoon Talas ripped through the west of the country.

Water and food are to be brought to remote villages by helicopter, with some communities cut off by landslides.

At least 37 people have been killed by the storm, which made landfall on Shikoku island on Saturday, triggering floods.

More than 50 people are believed to be missing, according to officials.

Japan is hit by several typhoons each year, but Talas is the most destructive since 2004.

No access

The typhoon swept through the region on Sunday, dumping heavy rain and bringing winds of up to 108km/h (68mph).

Entire villages have been flooded, with bridges and houses destroyed.

The BBC's Roland Buerk in Tokyo says much of the population of the areas hit by the typhoon is elderly, making the task of bringing relief supplies much more urgent.

In Nara prefecture local officials have prepared a ton of water and more than 3,000 rice meals to be airlifted by helicopter to the village of Totsukawa, where 12 people are dead or missing.

Map

In nearby Wakayama prefecture, the worst-hit area, 26 remote communities have been left isolated by landslides.

Electricity and mains water have been cut off, and deliverymen who usually supply food cannot get through.

Fifty-four people remain missing, according to the Fire and Disaster Management Agency. Some 3,000 are still sheltering in evacuation centres in the wake of the storm.

The government has set up an emergency task force to co-ordinate the rescue effort. New Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda, who was sworn in on Friday, has promised rescue efforts will continue.

More on This Story

Related Stories

More Asia-Pacific stories

RSS

Features

  • VigoroAnyone for Vigoro?

    The bizarre Edwardian attempt to merge tennis and cricket


  • ScissorsTwo more years

    How the UK's life expectancy changes without Scotland


  • Payton McKinnonLeft behind

    Why do so many children die in hot cars?


  • Dr Mahinder Watsa Dr Sex

    The wisecracking 90-year-old whose agony column is a cult hit


  • White Rhino, KenyaSky rangers

    How drones may be used to fight wildlife poaching in Africa


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.