Death toll continues to rise after heavy snowfall hits Japan

Death toll continues to rise after heavy snowfall hits Japan. Photo by Chi Kama Shutterstock.com

SEVERAL parts of Japan hit by heavy snowfall resulted in an increase in the death toll by Monday, December 26, as many died or were injured while removing snow from their roofs, according to the Fire and Disaster Management Agencies

Heavy snowfall in Japan has killed 17 people and injured more than 90 others. According to a statement by the country´s disaster management officials on Monday, the strong spell of snowfall since last week also left hundreds of homes without electricity.  

Several people in their vehicles were also left stranded on the roadways last week, leading to a rise in the death toll to 11 by Saturday. The toll eventually climbed further over the Christmas weekend, as more people became victims of the heavy snowfall.  

According to the Fire and Disaster Management Agency of Japan, the number of people who died or were injured increased by Monday as many people fell from their roofs while removing snow. Others were buried under thick piles of snow, falling from the rooftops. 

The agency also said that a woman in her 70s was found dead under a pile of snow. They said, her death was caused after snow from a rooftop fell on her, in the city of Nagai, approximately 300 kilometres from Tokyo.  

Residents of Japan´s main island in the north also suffered major power failure due to heavy snowfall, which left over 20,000 homes without electricity on Christmas morning. The electricity was later restored in most of the areas, according to Japanese officials. Train as well as flight services were also suspended across northern Japan on Sunday, but have since been restored   

As per official figures, many parts of northeastern Japan received over three times the average snowfall this season.  

Municipal authorities have now asked residents to use caution while removing snow from their houses. People have also been advised to not work alone.


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Imran Khan

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