Izu Oshima town officials said on Wednesday that dozens of residents have been evacuated as another typhoon is threatening to hit the island, which has not yet recovered from Typhoon Wipha’s damage. Some people have already initiated leaving the island while others will be evacuated on Thursday as Typhoon Francisco is expected to make landfall by Friday or Saturday.
A high-speed chartered ferry has taken more than 50 people to a Tokyo port on Wednesday. The evacuees, most of whom are elderly, crossed the 120-km distance to the capital for two hours. “A certain number of people have already left the island on a voluntary basis,” said Oshima town senior official Masahiro Mukoyama. He also said that three other people were evacuated from the island through a military helicopter the same day. Evacuation of residents will continue Thursday via a ferry chartered by the local government. Typhoon Francisco, described by the Japan Meteorological Agency as a “very strong” typhoon, is expected to arrive later this week.
About 1,700 police officers, soldiers, and rescue workers were deployed in continuous search and rescue efforts as the island suffered mudslides due to heavy rains and took the lives of 30 people. There are 15 people still missing so the efforts have to continue. Another town official said that about 500 elderly people in need of assistance and care are still on the island and might need help if Francisco proves to be as strong as Wipha.
[via Channel News Asia]