Typhoon Hagibis death toll rises to 72 with thousands left stranded in the cold without power

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The death toll from Typhoon Hagibis has risen to 72 in Japan, as thousands of residents remain without power or water and evening temperatures hover around 15 degrees Celsius (59 Fahrenheit), according to public broadcaster NHK.

The storm — one of the strongest to hit the country in years — made landfall on Saturday evening local time on the Izu Peninsula, southwest of Tokyo, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake.

In one tragic incident, a family of four perished as they were swept down a raging river in their car. A video released by TV Asahi on Tuesday shows rescuers trying to retrieve the crushed vehicle from the still turbulent waters in Sagamihara City, a suburb of greater Tokyo. The car fell from a bridge due to the strong rain and the swelling of the river, Takayuki Magara, a spokesman for the local fire department, told CNN. The bodies of the 49-year-old father, 39-year-old mother and 11-year-old daughter were all found scattered near to the car. The body of the 8-year-old son was uncovered on Tuesday morning 1.7 kilometers (1.1 miles) down the river.

Although typhoons are not uncommon in Japan, Hagibis was particularly brutal, leading to the high death toll. It is one of the deadliest typhoons to have hit Japan in the past decade, surpassed only by Typhoon Talas in 2011, which caused 82 deaths.

More than 230,000 people had been evacuated ahead of the storm. An estimated 5,500 people remain housed in shelters, according to Japan’s Cabinet Office. The Fire and Disaster Management Agency said in a release that 9,962 houses had been flooded across the country. The number of households without power stood at 34,000 as of Tuesday morning, down from a peak of 520,000. More than 133,000 households were also without water, according to the Cabinet Office. Because of the rain, 47 rivers burst their banks.

Typhoon Hagibis is on course to be one of the costliest natural disasters to have hit Japan, with insured losses of more than $9 billion.


This entry was posted in , by Grant Montgomery.

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