The death toll from immense floods and landslides in western Japan rose to 81 people on Sunday. Dozens are still missing after more than 2,000, temporarily stranded in the city of Kurashiki, were rescued. Evacuation orders were in place for nearly 2 million people and landslide warnings were issued in many prefectures.
In western Japan, emergency services and military personnel used helicopters and boats to rescue people, including a hospital.
Staff and patients were rescued from the Mabi Memorial Hospital in boats by members of Japan’s Self Defense Forces.
A city official said 170 patients and staff had been evacuated while public broadcaster NHK later said about 80 people were still stranded.
Kurashiki, with a population of just under 500,000, was among the hardest hit by rains. The death toll exceeded the 77 killed in heavy rains and landslides in 2014 and is the highest since a typhoon that killed 98 people in 2004.