• Kyodo News


Snow storms and bad weather disrupted trains and planes in Hokkaido and cut power across Aomori Prefecture on Saturday as a low pressure system developed in northern Japan.

In Hokkaido, more than 270 train runs connecting Sapporo, Wakkanai and Abashiri were suspended because of heavy snow, according to Hokkaido Railway Co.

The meteorological observatory in Sapporo reported as much as 54 cm of snow in Shari and strong winds with gusts of up to 147.96 kph in Rausu.

More than 140 flights to and from New Chitose International Airport were also canceled, the land ministry’s airport office said.

In Aomori Prefecture, as many as 50,000 households were hit by blackouts starting Friday night. Power was still out at about 10,200 households in two cities, including Goshogawara and Tsugaru, as of Saturday night, Tohoku Electric Power Co. said.

The utility said the winds were so strong that they severed power lines and broke utility poles.

Meanwhile, more than 120 houses in the prefecture reported damage to windows and rooftops. In addition, some 40 train runs between Aomori and Hachinohe on JR Tohoku Line were canceled.

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