• Kyodo


As he watched the deluge in the disaster-hit Fukuoka city of Asakura on TV on July 6, the day after the deadly rains began, Tetsuya Morooka, who runs a traditional inn called Yaguruma So, wondered if there was anything he could do.

The 46-year-old then decided to offer victims and volunteers helping in the cleanup and rescue effort free entry to his facility’s hot spring. Ten other hotels in the city’s Harazuru Onsen district have since started doing the same, handing out free tickets at shelters. About 16,000 people have taken up the offer as of July 30.

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