At least 19 people are missing as a landslide in western Tokyo struck home


Tokyo (AP) — After a heavy rain on Saturday, a powerful landslide carrying a flood of black water and debris crashed into a row of houses in a town west of Tokyo, leaving at least 19 people missing, officials said. It was.

Dozens of houses may have been buried in Atami, which is known for its hot springs. Takamichi Sugiyama, a spokesman for Shizuoka Prefecture, said.

Public broadcaster NHK had 20 missing people, but Sugiyama said it could increase further, but said the prefecture had confirmed at least 19 people.

From the beginning of this week, torrential rains have hit parts of Japan. Experts said that in countries full of valleys and mountains, soil loosened and the risk of landslides increased.

Sugiyama said it was raining heavily in the area in the morning. He added that the Self-Defense Forces would join firefighters and police in rescue operations. Evacuation warnings were issued extensively.

The landslide seemed to hit many times, about as fast as a car. The footage showed a powerful black landslide sliding down a hillside, knocking down a house, crushing it, and clearing a car along the way. Helpless neighbors were watching in horror, some recordings on their phone.

NHK TV footage showed that part of the bridge had collapsed.

Atami is a quaint seaside resort area in Shizuoka prefecture, about 100 km (60 miles) southwest of Tokyo. Izuyama, which was hit by a landslide, has hot springs, residential areas, shopping districts, and famous shrines.

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Mari Yamaguchi is on Twitter https://twitter.com/mariyamaguchi

Yuri Kageyama is on Twitter https://twitter.com/yurikageyama



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