At least 25 people were reported missing after heavy rains flooded a city near Tokyo, Japan. Search and rescue operations were underway Friday as severe rain warning remained in effect for parts of northern Japan.
Two deaths were reported after rain water washed away several homes. A 63-year-old woman was killed after her house was crushed by a landslide and another died after her car was swept away.
In Joso city, about 30 miles northeast of Tokyo, dozens of residents were airlifted out by military helicopters Friday morning after waiting overnight. The city witnessed a wall of muddy water after the Kinugawa River broke through a flood berm Thursday. Authorities reportedly said that at least 27 people were injured, eight seriously, while over 3,500 people were staying in evacuation centers.
"The central government, police, fire officials and military are all working as one," chief cabinet secretary Yoshihide Suga told a news conference, according to Reuters. "We are doing everything in our power to rescue those in need as soon as possible."
Over 50 helicopters and nearly 6,000 rescuers worked into the night Thursday to save people stranded as floodwaters continued to rise. More than 100 people were reportedly trapped in a shopping center in Joso.
"We spent the night in the car parked on the rooftop parking lot. Water was cut and toilets were out of service, but I'm so glad we all survived," Reiko Yamaji, 75, who was stranded at a supermarket with dozens of other shoppers, told the Associated Press after being rescued by a boat.
Toyota Motor Corp suspended production at three plants in northeastern Japan Friday morning, the company said, according to Reuters, adding that there had been no damage at any of the facilities.
Torrential rain battered parts of central and northeastern Japan Thursday, a day after Typhoon Etau made landfall on Chita Peninsula in Aichi prefecture. Floodwaters swept several homes forcing the evacuation of tens of thousands of people.
The "unprecedented" rain had created an emergency, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told a meeting of ministers, according to Reuters.