Japan braces for typhoon ahead of weekend

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A powerful typhoon is forecast to bring two feet of rain and damaging winds to the Tokyo area this weekend, and Japan’s government has warned people to stockpile supplies and evacuate before it becomes too dangerous.

The Rugby World Cup and other events were cancelled for Saturday, and flights and train services halted.

“In order to protect your own life and your loved ones, please try to start evacuating early before it gets dark and the storm becomes powerful,” Meteorological Agency forecast department chief Yasushi Kajihara told a news conference.

Japan Asia Typhoon
A man watches a public TV of weather forecast in Tokyo (Eugene Hoshiko/AP)

Kajihara said Typhoon Hagibis resembled a typhoon that hit the Tokyo region in 1958 with heavy rains and left a half-million houses flooded. More than 1,200 people died in that storm.

Prime minister Shinzo Abe’s cabinet is to hold a disaster management meeting later on Friday.

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RUGBYU Typhoon
Typhoon Hagibis likely path and sporting events affected. See story RUGBYU Typhoon. Infographic PA Graphics

“The government is doing the utmost to prepare for the approaching typhoon,” disaster management minister Ryota Takeda told reporters, and urged people to prepare early and obtain food and water.

Economy minister Isshu Sugawara urged hospitals and other public facilities to check their backup power.

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