14 feared dead at flooded nursing home in Japan

WION Web Team New Delhi Jul 04, 2020, 03.27 PM(IST)

An aerial view shows flooded Kuma River caused by heavy rain at a residential area in Hitoyoshi, Kumamoto prefecture, southern Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo July 4, 2020. Photograph:( Reuters )

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The victims were found "in cardio-respiratory arrest" at the facility for elderly people that was inundated after a nearby river broke its banks, governor Ikuo Kabashima from the western region of Kumamoto told reporters.

Fourteen people were feared dead and nine more were missing after a nursing home was flooded in western Japan on Saturday following a record heavy rain hit the region.

The victims were found "in cardio-respiratory arrest" at the facility for elderly people that was inundated after a nearby river broke its banks, governor Ikuo Kabashima from the western region of Kumamoto told reporters.

Authorities in Japan use that term before a doctor officially certifies death.

Meanwhile, Japan asked thousands of people to evacuate their homes on its southern island of Kyushu, Reuters report said quoting local media. 

With the region facing the risk of further floods and landslides, authorities told 92,200 households in the prefectures of Kumamoto and Kagoshima to vacate their homes, the Kyodo news agency said.

"The heavy rainfall is likely to continue until Sunday, and people in the area are required to be on maximum alert," Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said, adding that as many as 10,000 soldiers would be sent to join the rescue operations.

The flooding of the Kuma River in the region had cut off homes and washed away a bridge, said national broadcaster NHK, which displayed television footage of houses and cars inundated by muddy waters.

Japan's Meteorological Agency downgraded its alert from the highest level it had initially posted to warn against floods and landslides triggered by the rain never seen before in the region, the broadcaster said.

(With inputs from agencies)