Downpour turns room into pond in less than two minutes.
Trading a library for a canoe course wouldn’t be an entirely bad deal.
Last week, we discussed the possible etymology of Kinugawa (“Angry Demon River”), which has been the scene of intense flooding in eastern Japan this month. While the overflowing river has devastated the surrounding towns and landscapes in its wake, a single building in Joso City, Ibaraki Prefecture has been gaining particular attention for being the only structure within sight to stand firmly in place in the face of a deluge of muddy water.
The ports around the Chiba-area city of Choshi were last year honored for the fourth year in a row for having the largest catch of mackerel pike (a very popular fish known as sanma in Japanese) in Japan.
But that’s of little comfort to local fishermen who have this year found their boats stranded in a literal sea of garbage and debris that has been carried into the ports from the Tonegawa River. The heavy flooding of the Kanto region brought about by last week’s relentless rain is believed to be the cause of the sudden influx of waste.
When disaster zones are inaccessible by ground—such as the areas of Japan hit by widespread and deadly flooding last week—news broadcasters typically take to the air, relaying footage from helicopters. In the city of Joso, Ibaraki, news helicopters captured dramatic footage of rescue teams winching people to safety from rooftops on Thursday after the Kinugawa River burst its banks.
But helicopters can only get so close, and so authorities in Japan are now using drones to capture footage in disaster areas. The drones can fly closer to disaster-hit areas than a manned helicopter, offering a different and dramatic perspective.
And drones are not only being used to survey these areas hit by flooding and landslides; they are also starting to be used in rescue missions.
The flooding in Japan has been absolutely awful, without a doubt, and the news has rightly been focused on the resulting devastation. But there is one aspect of the flooding that’s become a bit of a hot topic online, aside from all the rescues and damage. The overflowing river has an…unusual name: Kinu River or the Angry Demon River.
Obviously, the name has proven to be quite apt this year, but it sparked a lot of discussion online as people have wondered: Where the heck did this name come from?!
Coverage of the heavy rains and typhoon that have swept through Japan this week have dominated much of the news in the country. Today, TV screens were filled with reports on the devastating flooding in Ibaraki Prefecture, where waters burst through the banks and flooded the city of Joso. Images and videos of rescue operations have been widely broadcast on TV, and the news is nothing less than shocking for many.
But one Twitter user saved from the waters by Japan’s Self-Defense Forces wasn’t too scared to tweet photos of his rescue while still inside the helicopter!
Japan is no stranger to natural disasters, and the world rose up in support after the devastating earthquake and tsunami in 2011 left thousands dead and millions homeless. Now it’s time for Japanese people to repay that kindness by supporting one of their greatest benefactors through their own period of crisis.
Sea levels may rise by about one meter by 2100 if carbon emissions continue unchecked, according to a recent survey of experts, and the effects on coastal cities could be devastating.
A 2008 report from the OECD ranked the most exposed cities, identifying areas that would be exposed if sea levels rose 0.5 meters by 2070 and there was a once-in-a-century storm, accounting for larger storms in some areas (raising water an additional 0.5 meters to 1.5 meters), natural and artificial land shifts, and urban growth.
Calcutta, India could be hit hardest, with 14 million people and $2.0 trillion in assets exposed in 2070 — and the problem could get even worse by 2100.
Typhoon Man-yi has been causing havoc across mainland Japan today, sweeping the length of the country and dumping torrential rains the like of which few have ever seen. Thousands of people in Western Japan have been forced to evacuate their homes, and as we can see in the following photographs, whole areas of Japan’s ancient capital city, Kyoto, have been left submerged after rivers burst their banks.