Strong winds brought on by a low pressure system hovering over Japan hit the nation’s eastern and central regions Friday, injuring 17 people and disrupting transportation services in the Kanto and Tokai regions, officials said.
The Kanto and Koshin regions in eastern Japan, the Hokuriku region along the Sea of Japan coast, the Tokai region in central Japan and the Kansai region in western Japan have now entered the rainy season, the Meteorological Agency said.
The Chugoku region in western Japan entered the rainy season Thursday. The Kyushu and Shikoku rainy seasons began last Saturday.
Among those injured on Friday were a 5-year-old girl and a female staff member at a kindergarten in Ichikawa, Chiba Prefecture.
They suffered minor injuries when they were hit by a metal hatch unhinged by the wind from the roof of a nearby condominium. The woman had been supervising students as they disembarked from a school bus, police said.
In Yachio, Chiba Prefecture, an 85-year-old woman was knocked over by a strong gust and suffered a broken leg, they said.
In the Kanto and Tokai regions, 131 JR train runs were temporarily halted in the morning, affecting some 230,000 passengers.
Winds up to 127.44 kph were clocked in Chiba during the morning.
The Keiyo Line connecting Tokyo and Soga in Chiba Prefecture suspended all services from around 8 a.m. after winds up to 108 kph were measured at a bridge over a river, JR East said.
Train services resumed about three hours later.
The Uchibo Line connecting Tokyo and Awa-Kamogawa in southern Chiba Prefecture also suspended some of its services temporarily, JR East officials said.
The Tsurumi Line connecting Tsurumi and Ogimachi stations, both in Kanagawa Prefecture, also temporarily suspended operations after a swaying tree limb touched a train pantograph at around 7:45 a.m., they said.
In the Kansai region, the JR Kansai Line halted services between Kamo, Kyoto Prefecture, and Kameyama, Mie Prefecture, from its earliest scheduled train runs due to rainfall of 35 mm to 40 mm per hour.
Some 1,900 passengers were affected before services resumed around 8 a.m.
Four other train lines, including the Wakayama Line and Sakurai Line, slowed due to heavy rains, affecting some 6,000 passengers.
At Haneda airport in Tokyo, Japan Airlines canceled two flights and Japan Air System four flights.
High winds, along with torrential rain, were expected to continue until this morning.
The Tokyo Bay Aqualine toll road connecting Kawasaki and Kisarazu, Chiba Prefecture, was temporarily closed, but reopened at 2 p.m.
Rainfall of up to 100 to 150 mm per hour has been forecast for the Tokai region, 70 mm to 100 mm for the southern Kyushu, Kii and Kanto regions, and 50 mm to 70 mm for northern Kyushu and the Kansai, Hokuriku and Koshin regions, the agency said.