Deadly typhoon passes over Japan tsunami zone

Storm has killed at least six people while many more are still missing, but caused no further damage to nuclear plant.

    No major impact reported on the tsunami-crippled Fukushima nuclear plant [EPA]

    A strong typhoon has left at least six people dead and six others missing after pounding Japan with heavy rain and strong winds, public broadcaster NHK said.

    Typhoon Roke prompted the city of Nagoya in central Japan to urge more than one million people to evacuate on Tuesday and it cut through Tokyo on Wednesday, halting commuter trains in and around the capital, affecting millions of passengers.

    Earlier this month, Typhoon Talas slammed into central Japan, killing at least 100 people [Al Jazeera]

    However, officials said on Thursday that it did not have a major impact on the tsunami-crippled Fukushima nuclear plant.

    Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO), operator of Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, said some monitoring equipment had suffered glitches but it did not appear as if the typhoon had caused any radioactive water to overflow into the ocean.

    The operator said that final checks were still under way.

    The site holds huge amounts of contaminated water used to cool reactors after cooling systems were knocked out by the March earthquake and tsunami. 

    However, it now looks as if the storm is losing strength.

    Roke, which has since been downgraded to a tropical storm, made landfall on Wednesday off Japan's northern island of Hokkaido as of 8:00am local time (2300 GMT), moving northeast at a speed of 70 km per hour.

    It was the second big storm to hit Japan this month after Typhoon Talas hit western Japan and left about 100 people dead or missing. Around two to four typhoons make landfall each year in Japan.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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