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Strong typhoon tracking along Pacific coast toward central Japan

10 October 2020 12:45

TOKYO. KAZINFORM - A powerful typhoon continued on its path along the Pacific coast from western to eastern Japan Saturday, bringing heavy rain and strong winds, the weather agency said, Kyodo News reports.

Typhoon Chan-hom, the season's 14th, is expected to weaken and move off the south coast of central Japan by Saturday night, the Japan Meteorological Agency said, but still called on the public to be wary of heavy rain, mudslides, flooding and swollen rivers.

There have been no serious injuries or deaths reported but a woman in her 50s fractured her leg after falling in high winds Friday in Wakayama Prefecture, western Japan, according to the prefectural government.

The Izu island chain, starting approximately 100 kilometers south of Tokyo, could see extremely heavy rainfall from Saturday through Sunday.

In the 24 hours through 6 a.m. Sunday, rainfall of up to 300 millimeters is projected for the Izu islands, up to 150 mm in the Tokai region, and 120 mm for the Kinki and Kanto regions.

Popular tourist destinations, including the central Japan city of Atami, saw travelers canceling weekend plans made under the government-subsidized «Go To Travel» scheme put in place to boost the virus-hit domestic tourism sector.

A hotel operator in Atami said it has seen its customers coming back thanks to the start of the government subsidy program, but the approaching typhoon has led to canceled bookings.

«It is disappointing...but it can't be helped as safety for customers comes first,» a hotel official said.

As of 11 a.m. Saturday, the typhoon was located about 160 kilometers south of Cape Shionomisaki in Wakayama Prefecture, the southernmost point of the country's main island of Honshu, heading northeast at a speed of 20 kilometers per hour. It has an atmospheric pressure of 985 hectopascals at its center and is packing winds of up to 144 kph, according to the agency.