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Japan: Typhoon Mindulle lashes Tokyo area

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A powerful typhoon has battered the Greater Tokyo area in Japan, leaving at least one person dead and dozens injured, according to media reports.

Typhoon Mindulle made landfall at noon on Monday, moving upwards from the Japanese capital to the northern Tohoku region, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency.

Bringing winds of up to 180km an hour, the storm was heading north at a speed of 25km an hour from Miyake Island in early morning, the agency said.

In Kanagawa prefecture, a 58-year-old police was swept away by flood waters and later died in hospital, according to Kyodo.

Dozens of people were injured, many of them in falls caused by the strong wind, the DPA news agency said.

Hundreds of thousands were urged to leave their homes in the Greater Tokyo area and the north-east, broadcaster NHK reported.

As Mindulle was heading off to the northeast and the island of Hokkaido, weather authorities were warning of mudslides, flooding, swollen rivers and high waves in those regions and eastern Japan.

The storm forced airlines across the country to cancel more than 500 flights, while runways of the Narita International Airport were temporarily closed.

Japan Airlines said it had cancelled 145 domestic flights through mid-afternoon, affecting 26,910 customers, while All Nippon Airways cancelled 96 domestic flights, affecting 21,300 passengers.

There were reported delays and cancellation of train services, including the super-fast bullet trains.

Rainfall of up to 200mm was predicted for Hokkaido by Tuesday evening, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency.

Separately, Typhoon Kompasu, which hit Japan’s northern main island of Hokkaido on Sunday, had been downgraded to a temperate depression by early on Monday and moved away into the Sea of Okhotsk, according to the weather agency.

A man was found dead on Monday on an inundated street in the city of Kitami on Hokkaido, where Kompasu caused flooding the previous day, DPA reported.

A third tropical storm called Lionrock was south of the island of Shikoku, but is not expected to hit Japan directly.

[Source: Al Jazeera and agencies]
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