A powerful typhoon that officials warned could bring record rains and gusts strong enough to flip cars slammed into southern Japan on Saturday, September 5, 2020, prompting authorities to urge millions to seek shelter.
Channels TV reports that Typhoon Harshen has weakened somewhat as it neared Japan’s mainland, and shifted further west out to sea, but it remained a “large” and “extremely strong” storm.
After lashing a string of exposed, remote Southern Islands, it neared Japan’s Kyushu region on Saturday evening, with authorities’ issue of evacuation advisories for more than seven million residents.
The weather Agency urged peoples to exercise “most serious caution” for possible record rain, violent winds, high waves and surging tides.
The Director of the forecast division at the Japan Meteorological Agency, Yoshihisa Nakamoto, during a televised briefing said “Record-level rainfall is expected. It may cause landslides or it could cause even large rivers to flood,”
He added that surging tides could cause widespread flooding in low-lying areas, particularly around river mouths; adding that as the storm passed over several remote islands earlier Sunday, strong winds bent palm trees and sheets of rain lashed the area.
At an emergency cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe warned that flooding and landslides were a possibility; saying: “Maximum caution is needed as record rain, violent winds, high waves and high tides are possible. I ask the Japanese people, including those who live in high-risk areas for flooding rivers or high tides, to stay informed and take action immediately to ensure their safety.”
The storm was forecast to move north and travel off the western coast of Kyushu before reaching South Korea Monday morning, according to the weather agency.