While water damage accounts for nearly 23% of all U.S. home property damage, citizens of Japan are seeing more than just a few flooded basements, according to a recent report from The Weather Channel.
When a breached levee caused floodwaters to race through a Tokyo neighborhood, people were trapped on the roofs of their homes, as well as inside area buildings. Nine people have been reported missing since the floods began, and helicopters spent Thursday conducting rescues, which were televised worldwide.
With an estimated 110 people stranded on rooftops around the city, not every rescue appeared to be successful. Included in the live broadcast was coverage of a couple who fell into the floodwaters as the home they were stranded on began to give out beneath them. Footage cut back to Japanese anchors, leaving the fate of the couple uncertain.
On Thursday evening, 78,000 people were still evacuating the area, as landslides and rising waters created more and more perilous conditions. As many as 860,000 total residents were advised to evacuate the greater Tokyo area.
Collapsed mine shafts, overturned cars, and over 30 landslides were just some of the consequences that followed the heavy flooding. Because of the tropical storm that contributed to the high waters and the heavy winds, 27 flights were cancelled out of the nearby Chubu Centrair Airport, near Nagoya.
In total, 17.48 inches of rain were reported over the span of 24 hours, more than double the previous record set in July of 2002 (only 8.35 inches). Because of tropical storm Etau, the rain is not expected to stop any time soon, but is expected to clear up fairly quickly once the storms cease. Japanese Red Cross representative, Yuko Yoshida, commented on the state of response:
“From our assumptions, the government has managed this situation well. Medical facilities are operating.”