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18 Dead and Over 40 Missing After Typhoon Hits Japan

  • VOA News

Rescuers in Japan are continuing to search for missing people on Thursday after landslides triggered by Typhoon Wipha covered houses in mud and debris.

Authorities say at least 18 people were killed Wednesday and more than 40 are missing after Typhoon Wipha struck Izu Oshima island, south of Tokyo.

"We have to prioritize as our top mission the rescue as many people as possible and confirmation of the safety of as many of this still believed missing," said Masakumi Kawashima, mayor of Oshima.

Some survivors are struggling to get things back in order.

"We don't have tools, so we can't do much to clear [mud] out of the house," said one resident.

"I don't know what is still useable but I think it's all gone,” said another,

Japan's Fire and Disaster Management agency said more than 300 houses were destroyed after Typhoon Wipha dumped more than 80 centimeters of rain on Izu Oshima.

The typhoon was downgraded to a tropical storm Wednesday evening as it moved toward the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido.

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