Heavy rains flood houses and streets in southern Japan

Torrential rains lashed much of Japan on Sunday, submerging roads and buildings in the western part of the country, while three people were feared dead after a landslide in central Nagano prefecture.

As of Sunday morning, the rain had stopped in much of Kyushu, even as Tokyo and other parts of the country were pounded by the downpour.

In Takeo, a city in Saga prefecture in Kyushu, entire roads were submerged as rescue workers in wetsuits dragged inflatable boats and surveyed the damage. Local residents carried broomsticks and buckets and waded knee-deep in water.

"I was really shocked (by the flooding). I also experienced the 2016 Kumamoto earthquake, but this has left an impression on me in a different way." said 22-year-old resident Nozomi Okamoto.

A level-4 evacuation warning, the second highest alert, was still in place for Takeo and nearby towns for about 18,380 households as of 12 noon local time (0300GMT).

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