• Kyodo


A weakening Typhoon Jongdari traveled over the southernmost main island of Kyushu after passing over western parts of Honshu on Sunday, in its wake leaving at least 24 people injured and causing extreme heat in the Hokuriku region along the Sea of Japan.

However, no injuries or damage due to Jongdari were immediately reported in regions ravaged by flooding and landslides earlier this month, as local authorities had advised residents to evacuate early as a precaution.

The typhoon made landfall near Ise, Mie Prefecture, early Sunday morning. It brought intense rainfall across wide areas and led to temperatures rising close to 40 C in Hokuriku in a phenomenon known as a Foehn wind, or moist air that becomes warm and dry after passing over high mountains.

A Kyodo News tally showed at least 24 people were hurt over the weekend, some after being hit by falling objects, but no deaths or missing persons had been reported as of Sunday night.

Elsewhere, a worker fractured his left foot after falling from the roof of a house in Higashiosaka during renovation work early Sunday, police said. Roofs were also blown off by strong winds.

The typhoon, which was on an unusual westbound trajectory, passed right through the disaster-hit areas. The government issued a rare warning beforehand to get residents to evacuate early as a precaution.

The areas remained on high alert as the Meteorological Agency warned of further flooding and landslides, as well as high waves.

“I was afraid of getting more torrential rain, but I’m relieved that we did not have any major damage this time,” said Nobuhiro Kanetomo, 40, in Kurashiki, Okayama Prefecture, one of the hardest-hit areas in the early July rain disaster.

Jongdari slowed to 25 kph as it continued west toward Kyushu, and it was in the vicinity of Saga Prefecture as of 10 p.m. Sunday, the Meteorological Agency said.

Transportation was also affected, with Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways canceling some flights from Tokyo to western parts of the nation.

West Japan Railway Co. (JR West) and private railways said some services were either delayed or halted.

On Saturday night, in Odawara, Kanagawa Prefecture, 15 vehicles, including an ambulance, became marooned on a flooded road next to the ocean after high waves swamped it. About 30 people were evacuated to higher ground.

The same night, five people staying at a hotel in Shizuoka Prefecture were slightly hurt by glass after a restaurant window was apparently shattered by high waves caused by the typhoon.

Rain will continue in some areas, even after the typhoon passes.

Typhoons typically approach the Japanese archipelago from the southwest, and many follow a southwest-to-northeast course due partly to the effect of the westerly jet stream and anticyclones over the Pacific.

But Jongdari’s unusual course prompted Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Friday to warn about the weekend storm, particularly for those affected by the massive flooding in western Japan that killed 224 people and destroyed tens of thousands of homes earlier this month.

Temperatures are also expected to shoot up after the typhoon moves away, bringing back the risk of heatstroke and heat exhaustion.

The country has been gripped by a heat wave that immediately followed the rain disaster and which the agency declared to be a “natural disaster.”

Extreme heat pushed the mercury to a record high 41.1 degrees in Kumagaya, Saitama Prefecture, last Mondayand the nationwide heatstroke was blamed for the deaths of dozens of lives, most of them elderly people.

In the 24-hour period through noon Monday, up to 200 mm of rain may soak some areas of western and southern Japan.

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