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Typhoon Slams Japan, Spurs Evacuations, Power Cuts

Takashi Nakamichi and Kana Nishizawa

(Bloomberg) -- A powerful typhoon lashed through Japan on Saturday, causing wide-spread flooding and power outages and prompting local authorities to instruct millions of people to evacuate.

Dozens of rivers around Tokyo have seen water rise to dangerous levels while a number of dams upstream are set to release water due to heavy rain, according to national broadcaster NHK. Water has started to overflow from Tama River, one of the biggest in Tokyo, to around the residential district of Setagaya, according to the land ministry.

Hagibis was located around Kawasaki city, just outside of Tokyo, at 9 p.m. after making landfall in Izu Peninsula earlier, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency. The storm is expected to move northeast into the Pacific Ocean overnight.

At least two people have been killed and six are missing due to the typhoon, according to Kyodo.

Over 100,000 buildings across nine prefectures have lost electricity due to the storm, the Asahi newspaper reported.

The typhoon has caused more than 1,000 flight cancellations, disrupted train services and forced the closure of factories and shops.

Hagibis, while weakened after making landfall, was packing winds of up to 198 kilometers (123 miles) per hour as of 9 p.m. local time, according the meteorological agency.

Highest Rain Warning

The agency issued the highest level of warning for rain and urged residents in Tokyo and 10 other prefectures -- Kanagawa, Saitama, Gunma, Yamanashi, Nagano, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Fukushima, Niigata and Miyagi -- to take the “best actions to preserve life.”

Honda Motor Co. shut down four factories and about 1,000 7-Eleven convenience stores in Tokyo and surrounding areas have been closed, the Nikkei newspaper reported Saturday.

Toyota Motor Corp., Nippon Steel Corp. and Sapporo Holdings Ltd. have also suspended operations at some plants, while Tokyo Disney Resort operator Oriental Land Co. said its two theme parks will be closed Saturday through midday on Sunday.

Rugby World Cup games pitting England against France and New Zealand against Italy have been called off. A final decision on Sunday’s games, including a crucial match between hosts Japan and Scotland, will be made that morning.

(Updates latest position of typhoon, death toll.)

To contact the reporters on this story: Takashi Nakamichi in Tokyo at tnakamichi1@bloomberg.net;Kana Nishizawa in Tokyo at knishizawa5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Shamim Adam at sadam2@bloomberg.net, Kazunori Takada

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