TOKYO, Oct. 25 (Xinhua) — Torrential rain has been lashing swathes of Japan on Friday owing to a low-pressure system affecting areas from the Kanto region, including Tokyo, through to the already typhoon-battered Tohoku region, the weather agency here said.
According to the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA), as well as in the Tokyo metropolitan region, neighboring Chiba prefecture has been hit by heavy downpours, with torrential rain and possible thunderstorms also forecast in eastern to northeastern regions in the country through Saturday.
In Chiba Prefecture’s Kamogawa City, 85.5 mm of rain per hour was logged as falling Friday morning and 215 mm over 12 hours until noon was logged in the prefecture’s Otaki Town, the weather agency said, adding that the amount in Otaki in the 12-hour period was almost as much as an entire average month in the region.
In the 24-hour period through Saturday morning, the weather agency has forecast 150 mm of rain to fall in the Kanto and Tohoku regions, and, along with the Pacific Izu Islands, 150 mm is expected to hit the central Japan regions of Tokai and Koshin.
The current and coming downpours are likely to further hamper the stop-start repair and restoration work in areas pummeled by Typhoon Hagibis earlier this month as persistent rain since the most powerful typhoon to strike Japan in decades has continued in the wake of the mega-storm.
According to local media reports Friday, the death toll from Typhoon Hagibis has risen to 88, with seven people still unaccounted for.
In Fukushima Prefecture, worst hit by Hagibis and still reeling in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami disaster in 2011, 30 people have died, and officials are warning people in the northeastern region to be vigilant over the next 24 hours for further flooding, thunderstorms and landslides caused by the current unstable atmospheric conditions responsible for the downpours.
More than 74,000 houses were inundated by the typhoon and 7,400 were destroyed or damaged, and as 4,000 people in 11 prefectures remain displaced in evacuation shelters, officials Friday urged local municipalities to prepare for more torrential rain and the possibility of more evacuees in the event of further weather-related disasters.
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