TOKYO – A typhoon expected to hit Tokyo missed the capital and moved toward northeastern Japan on Sunday after leaving five people dead and forcing tens of thousands to evacuate.
Authorities said Typhoon Man-Yi was losing strength as it passed southwest of Tokyo, with sustained winds of 56 miles an hour.
As of midday Sunday, more than 40,000 people had been evacuated. Forecasters warned of continued heavy rains, high waves and strong winds, according to the Fire and Disaster Management Agency.
Earlier in the day, rescuers found the body of a 79-year-old farmer who was swept into a river after going to check on his rice field in Tokushima, on the western island of Shikoku, according to agency spokesman Yukihide Nakashima.
An 11-year-old boy and another 79-year-old man drowned in separate incidents on Kyushu island Saturday. Two other men were killed earlier last week after being swept away in southern Japan, it said.
At least 80 people were injured as the typhoon skirted its way up Honshu island's east coast, many from being knocked down by strong winds, Nakashima said.
Fifteen houses were destroyed and about 1,500 flooded.
High winds off the Izu island chain south of Tokyo whipped up waves as high as 30 feet, the agency said.
Man-Yi is the strongest typhoon on record to hit Japan in July, when storms are relatively rare, according to agency spokesman Toshiyuki Suzuki.
Airlines canceled hundreds of flights leaving Kyushu, as well as from airports in Nagoya and Tokyo.
At its current wind speed, Man-Yi would be considered a tropical storm in the U.S., but Japan classifies storms with winds over 38 miles an hour as typhoons.