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Floods and landslides triggered by torrential rains this week in Yamaguchi Prefecture have resulted in the deaths or disappearances of 17 people.

All the victims were elderly. Seven of them were residents of a nursing home for the elderly in a mountainous area in the city of Hofu. This kind of disaster can happen in many parts of Japan. The central and local governments should examine in detail what happened in Yamaguchi Prefecture and work out future preventive measures.

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