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Japan surveys damage after typhoon causes devastation

Typhoon Jebi caused at least ten deaths as it swept across part of Japan’s main island.

A wall of Minami Noh Butai of Nishi Honganji temple.
A wall of Minami Noh Butai of Nishi Honganji temple. AP

One of Japan's busiest airports remains closed indefinitely after the strongest typhoon to hit the country in at least 25 years flooded a runway and damaged other infrastructure.

Typhoon Jebi also caused at least ten deaths as it swept across part of Japan's main island.

More than 400,000 households in western and central Japan were left without power after Jebi struck with sustained winds of 100mph at landfall.

High waves hit breakwaters at the port of Aki
High waves hit breakwaters at the port of Aki Ichiro Banno/Kyodo News/AP

Chief cabinet secretary Yoshihide Suga said at least ten people were confirmed dead and about 300 were injured.

A tanker that became unmoored by the typhoon's pounding waves and wind slammed into a bridge linking offshore Kansai International Airport to the mainland, damaging the bridge and the ship and stranding 3,000 passengers overnight at the airport.

Under sunny skies on Wednesday morning, they left by boat or were transported by buses across an intact road on the damaged bridge.

A tanker slammed into the side of a bridge
A tanker slammed into the side of a bridge Kentaro Ikushima/Mainichi Newspaper/AP

The airport is built on two artificial islands in Osaka Bay, and the high seas flooded one of the runways, cargo storage and other facilities, said the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism.

One passenger was slightly injured by shards from a window shattered by the storm.

Airport officials could not say when the airport would resume operations. Flooding has largely subsided, but assessments were still being done on possible damage to equipment key to flight operations and repairs of the damaged bridge.

Kansai International Airport was left under water
Kansai International Airport was left under water Kentaro Ikushima/Mainichi Newspaper/AP

The airport is a gateway for Asian tourists visiting Osaka, Kyoto and Kobe. A closure of the only international airport serving one of Japan's key business and commercial areas has triggered concerns about its impact on tourism and the economy.

The passengers who were stranded overnight appeared relieved but exhausted and said they spent an uneasy night in the dark.

Car maker Daihatsu, electronics giant Panasonic and beverage maker Kirin suspended production at factories in Osaka and nearby prefectures on Tuesday, although most of them are expected to resume on Wednesday, Kyodo News agency reported.

The Universal Studios Japan theme park in Osaka closed for a second day on Wednesday but said in a news release it would reopen on Thursday.

Burned cars in Nishinomiya
Burned cars in Nishinomiya Hiroko Harima/Kyodo News/AP

The deaths included a man in his 70s who was blown to the ground from his apartment in Osaka prefecture. Police said five others died elsewhere in the prefecture after being hit by flying objects or falling from their apartments.

In nearby Shiga prefecture, a 71-year-old man died when a storage unit collapsed on him, and a man in his 70s died after falling from a roof in Mie, officials said.

In nearby Nishinomiya, Hyogo prefecture, about 100 cars at a seaside dealership burned after their electrical systems were shorted out by sea water, fire officials said.

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