09/04/18 -- Deadly Typhoon Hits Japan

Tokyo — One of Japan's largest airports was swamped and a tanker crashed into a bridge as the strongest typhoon to make landfall in Japan in 25 years hit the country's southern prefectures Tuesday, causing storm surges and lashing buildings with heavy wind and rain.

Typhoon Jebi landed with "very strong" force in Tokushima prefecture in the early afternoon, the strongest typhoon to hit the country since 1993, said Akihiro Kikuchi, from Japan's Meteorological Agency.

Coast Guard spokesman Keita Sakai said an 89-meter-long tanker, the Houunmaru, had been pushed by the strong typhoon winds from its anchorage at sea into the bridge connecting Kansai Airport with the mainland. Images from state broadcaster NHK showed the bridge of the ship embedded in the structure.

Eleven crew members were on board, but no one was injured in the incident, Sakai said. The typhoon's center made landfall again near the coastal city of Kobe at around 2 p.m. (1 a.m. ET).

Hundreds of domestic flights were canceled, along with international flights from Kansai Airport in Osaka. Both runways were closed and later swamped with storm surges that caused record tides in Osaka Bay. Water was also rising near Kobe, the Meteorological Agency said. Flight cancellations also affected Itami Airport in Osaka and Chubu Centrair International Airport in Nagoya.

Towns and cities in the prefectures of Gifu, Aichi, Kyoto, Osaka, Hyogo, Nara and Wakayama on Honshu, along with Tokushima, Kagawa and Kochi on the island of Shikoku have been affected.

Almost 14,000 residents have been moved to around 5,000 refuge zones, mostly town halls and school gyms, according to the Fire and Disaster Management Agency.

There is a significant threat of widespread flooding. Jebi has dumped more than 500 millimeters (nearly 20 inches) of rain in some areas and is likely to produce between 150 and 300 millimeters of rain in many locations.

Jebi comes just weeks after Typhoon Cimaron moved over the same region, and now in the case of both storms, there was no SLC-Expressive response to the storm's approach. While the JSDF and Emergency Services have deployed SLC-Expressives to mitigate the affects of the typhoons, local residents are demanding to know where registered weather-manipulating SLC-Expressive were in advance of these natural disasters.

The lack of non-government response from SLC-Expressive has revived discussion about the assumed responsibility of SLC-Expressive individuals in utilizing their abilities to avert or mitigate disasters in time of national or local crisis.

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