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Torrential rains, landslides kill 157 in Japan (Second Lead)

Tuesday - July 10, 2018 7:22 pm , Category : SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Tokyo July 10 (IANS) At least 157 people have died in floods and landslides triggered by torrential rains in western Japan as rescuers are digging through mud and rubble in a race to find survivors with dozens missing.
This is one of the worst and deadliest disaster to have hit Japan since heavy rains in 1982 which had left about 300 people dead. More than 70 000 rescue workers including the fire service and the Army were involved in the relief effort the government said on Tuesday.
Heavy rainfall has been lashing the country since Thursday especially the western prefectures of Hiroshima and Ehime and caused floods and landslides that destroyed property and completely cut off several towns public broadcaster NHK reported.
Most deaths were reported from the prefectures of Hiroshima Okayama and Ehime. About two million people were evacuated after rivers burst their banks.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced on Tuesday that the government will use about $18 million from its reserve fund to provide relief to areas affected by the heavy rainfall. Some areas were reportedly experiencing shortages of daily necessities.
More than 23 000 people continued to live in temporary shelters on Tuesday according to NHK.
Rainfall caused rivers to flood inundating entire towns where water rose three metres high at some points and caused serious damage to buildings roads bridges and other infrastructure.
Some 51 000 houses were left without electricity in six prefectures while more than 260 000 households suffered water cuts in 13 other prefectures on Monday the Japanese government said.

--IANS soni/mr