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Japan Deployed Troops to Shovel Snow  as Death Toll From Snowstorm Reaches 63

Authorities in Japan have sent soldiers to remove snow from roads and houses in areas hit by a record-breaking snowstorm.

The soldiers were sent to Nagano and Niigata prefectures, nortwest of Tokyo, over the weekend to help shovel snow that piled up to three meters high in some places.

The agency said at least 63 people have died and more than 1,000 people have been injured since the unusually heavy snowfall began last month. It based the figures on its own survey of local governments.

Many of the dead were elderly people who fell from their roofs while trying to clear snow. Others were killed when the heavy snow crushed their homes. Local authorities have called for people to help elderly residents who cannot cope with the snowstorm.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.