National

Heavy rains prompt evacuation orders in Kagoshima as weather agency warns of mudslides and floods

Kyodo

Heavy rains prompted an evacuation order for some 6,000 residents in 2,859 households in Ichikikushikino, Kagoshima Prefecture, on Monday morning, as well as an evacuation advisory issued to more than 1.21 million people in 550,000 households in Miyazaki, Kumamoto and Kagoshima prefectures as the Meteorological Agency warned of mudslides and floods.

In the city of Kagoshima, a woman in her 70s died after being buried in mud up to her neck at her home in the Honjo district following a landslide on a mountain behind her house.

The agency said precipitation over six hours Monday morning reached 241.5 millimeters in Kirishima and 233 mm in Hioki, both in Kagoshima, marking record-high rainfall in both locations.

In one flooded residential area in Kirishima, three elderly people who were stranded there were rescued by boat.

Route 3 was closed due to a landslide and the Kyushu Shinkansen temporarily halted operations between Kumamoto and Kagoshima-Chuo stations.

Some areas in eastern and western Japan may see thunderstorms through Thursday, the agency said, as warm, moist air drawn in by low-pressure systems could lead to extended periods of torrential rain and strong gusts of wind in some areas.

The agency predicts rainfall in the 24 hours up to 6 a.m. Tuesday could reach 200 mm in southern Kyushu, 100 mm in northern Kyushu and the Shikoku and Kinki regions, and 80 mm across the Tokai region.