- Tokyo snowstorm takes seven lives, injures 1,000!
Heavy snow in Japan’s capital, Tokyo, has disrupted transportation systems, leaving eleven people dead and more than 1,000 others injured.
As much as 27 centimeters (10.6 inches) of snow was recorded in Tokyo by late Saturday, the heaviest snowfall in the Japanese capital in 45 years, meteorologists said on Sunday.
Hundreds of flights as well as bullet train services were canceled in Tokyo and the surrounding areas. Moreover, at Narita International Airport near Tokyo, more than 8,000 people were forced to spend Saturday night in the terminal, as expressway buses and railways connecting the airport to Tokyo became inoperative.
According to local media reports, the fatalities attributed to the snowstorm were due to accidents caused by icy road conditions. More than 20,000 households were without electricity early Sunday, while airlines canceled nearly 300 domestic flights a day after more than 740 flights were grounded.
Moreover, the snowstorm paralyzed Tokyo on the eve of its historic gubernatorial election. On Sunday morning, voters in the capital started casting ballots. There are speculations that one of the candidates, who is supported by the ruling party, will likely clinch the race to become the Tokyo governor. Observers say heavy snowfall may affect the voter turnout.