Japan has issued evacuation advisories for almost 300,000 people and cancelled hundreds of flights in the face of strong winds and heavy rain as typhoon Jebi hits.
Jebi – whose name means “swallow” in Korean – is the latest harsh weather to hit Japan this season following deadly rains, landslides, floods and record-breaking heat that killed hundreds of people.
It was bearing down on western Japan and set to make landfall on Shikoku, the smallest main island, before raking across the western part of the largest main island, Honshu, and Osaka, the nation’s second-largest city, later today.
Evacuation advisories were issued for some 280,000 people as the wind and rain began picking up.
Television footage showed waves pounding the coastline amid warnings that high tides later today would coincide with the storm’s passage.
Wind gusts of up to 166 km/h were recorded in one part of Shikoku, with forecasts for gusts as high as 216km/h.
Around 87 millimetres of rain drenched some areas in an hour this morning, with as much as 500 millimetres set to fall in the 24 hours to tomorrow morning.
Nearly 600 flights were cancelled, along with scores of ferries and trains, NHK public television said.
The Shinkansen bullet train was operating on a reduced schedule and Universal Studios Japan, a popular amusement park near Osaka, was closed.