TOKYO – Several automobile and technological firms suspended operations in their plants Wednesday as unprecedented heavy rains led to floods and landslides that have left 179 dead in the country until now.
Carmaker Mitsubishi Motors decided to keep its Mizushima plant closed for the third day in the Okayama Prefecture, one of the hardest hit by the rains, to ensure safety of workers.
The company had temporarily stopped production on Monday, but completely halted operations on Tuesday and Wednesday.
It said it would take a decision whether to resume production after evaluating the weather condition on Thursday, a Mitsubishi spokesperson told EFE.
Mazda Motor, too, kept it plants in Fuchu – located in the Hiroshima Prefecture (where most deaths have occurred) – and Hofu (Yamaguchi Prefecture) closed after the homes of more than 100 of its employees in the Fuchu complex were flooded, reported Kyodo news agency.
Mazda plans to resume production Thursday, added Kyodo.
Technological giant Panasonic on Wednesday stopped production in its video cameras manufacturing plant in Okayama after the facilities were flooded.
The shares of both carmakers dropped Wednesday at the Tokyo Stock Exchange, where Mazda shares fell 1.12 percent and that of Mitsubishi fell 1.36 percent.
Shares of Panasonic recorded a slight decline of 0.39 percent.