Typhoon Hagibis: 56 Dead, Hundreds Injured in Latest Toll

  • "Even now, many people are still unaccounted for in the disaster-hit area," Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told an emergency disaster meeting on Monday.
  • Thousands who have chosen to seek public shelters to wait for the storm may remain indefinitely.
  • Japan's national rugby team brought some comfort to the country by beating Scotland, 28-21.

The death toll following Typhoon Hagibis in Japan has left 56 people dead, 15 missing, and 204 injured, according to reports in the nation’s local media. The storm hit the country on Saturday night with winds of up to 200 km / h, causing massive landslides and floods.

Typhoon Hagibis was a large and powerful tropical cyclone that was considered to be the most devastating typhoon to hit the Kantō region of Japan since Typhoon Ida in 1958. Hagibis caused additional impacts in Japan, after Faxai struck the same region one month prior.

The government has since mobilized 110,000 rescuers, 31,000 of them military personnel, to the affected areas in an attempt to locate the missing and alleviate the damage caused by the storm. “Even now, many people are still unaccounted for in the disaster-hit area,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told an emergency disaster meeting on Monday.

The rescue operation continues despite the threat of new storms hitting the country. Japanese weather forecasters warned that there is a chance of new rainfall in the central and eastern regions, increasing the risk of landslides and flooding. “Rain is expected today in disaster-stricken areas,” said Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga. “I would like to ask people to stay fully vigilant and continue watching for landslides and river flooding,” he added.

About 135,000 families in the country are without electricity or access to clean water. Thousands more who have chosen to seek public shelters to wait for the storm may remain indefinitely there because there is no guarantee that their homes have weathered the storm.

The 2019 Rugby World Cup is the ongoing ninth Rugby World Cup, the quadrennial rugby union world championship. The tournament is being held in Japan from 20 September to 2 November.

A total of 176 rivers overflowed, mostly in northern and eastern Japan, and a dike collapsed in the Nagano region, discharging the waters of the Chikuma River into a residential area whose houses were flooded. In some places, helicopters rescued refugee residents from their balconies or rooftops, while crews aboard boats roamed the muddy waters between houses in search of trapped people.

Typhoon victims include at least seven crew members of a cargo ship that sank Saturday in the rough waters of Tokyo Bay. Four others have been saved, and a twelfth is still wanted, a Coast Guard spokesman said.

The storm also caused the cancellation of three matches for the Japan-hosted Rugby World Cup. However, the decisive final group stage match between the hosts and Scotland was held on Sunday night. The national team brought some comfort to the country by winning, 28-21. The team will be in the quarterfinals of the tournament for the first time in its history.

Before the match began, fans and players dedicated a minute of silence to those affected, and the Japanese team dedicated their victory to the typhoon victims. “For all those who suffered from the typhoon, this victory is yours,” said New Zealand team captain Michael Leitch.

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Vincent Ferdinand

News reporting is my thing. My view of what is happening in our world is colored by my love of history and how the past influences events taking place in the present time.  I like reading politics and writing articles. It was said by Geoffrey C. Ward, "Journalism is merely history's first draft." Everyone who writes about what is happening today is indeed, writing a small part of our history.

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