Torrential rain hits northern Japan

At least five people are killed by floods and mudslides.

Japan floods
Flood water near Lake Tazawa in Semboku rushed down the hillsides destroying trees and homes [AFP]

Torrential rain triggered severe floods and mudslides in parts of northern Japan, leaving at least five people dead, officials said.

Local broadcaster TBS showed widespread flooding in the town of Yahaba, in Iwate prefecture, and residents wading through waterlogged streets on Saturday.

No injuries or deaths have been reported in the area, though town officials said about 300 residents were evacuated on Friday and that about 130 remained at evacuation centres.

However, in the city of Senboku, in Akita prefecture, local officials said three people were found dead after a mudslide crushed two houses.

A team of almost 280 police officers, firefighters and self-defence forces were searching for two people who remained missing.

Officials also said that one person died following a mudslide in the city of Hanamaki, and that another was found dead in a river in the town of Nishiwaga.

Source: Al Jazeera, News Agencies