TOKYO – The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) raised on Monday the alert for heavy rains along with possible landslides and floods in western Japan due to the passage of Typhoon Noru, which has left at least two people dead and 15 injured so far.
Authorities ordered on Monday the evacuation of 70,000 people in the prefectures of Kochi, Kagawa and Tokushima, located on Tokushima island, and urged more than 200,000 people to be prepared to leave their homes at any time.
At 10:00 am, Noru, the fifth typhoon of 2017 in the Northern Pacific, was in southern Japan where it rained 52 millimeters per hour in the town of Higashi Kagawa and 33 millimeters per hour in Mie, Japanese public broadcaster NHK reported.
The typhoon is advancing at 20 kilometers per hour (12.4 miles per hour) in a northeasterly direction towards the island of Honshu, the main archipelago, where it is expected to make landfall on Monday at around 3:00 pm, according to JMA data.
Noru is accompanied by wind gusts of up to 162 kph (100 mph) and heavy rainfall is expected to intensify in the next 24 hours and could reach 500 millimeters of rain in Mie Prefecture and about 400 millimeters in Nara.
The typhoon led to the cancellation of at least 228 flights on Monday and some highways in Kagawa prefecture have also been cut off.
After two weeks of hovering over the ocean and several changes in its trajectory, Noru made landfall near the northern island of Kyushu on Sunday, leaving two dead in the nearby Osumi Islands, located south of the island.
The deceased are a 67-year-old woman who suffered a fall in Yakushima and an 84-year-old man who drowned near his boat in the port of Minamitane on Tanegashima island.