Travelers urged to stay away from rain-affected Japan areas

Taipei, Taiwan's Foreign Ministry urged travelers Saturday to avoid visiting five prefectures in the southern-central region of Japan's main island in the wake of torrential rain there.

People should stay away from Hiroshima, Okayama, Tottori, Hyogo and Kyoto prefectures, which are under the influence of heavy rain, according to the ministry.

While the Japanese government issued heavy rain warnings for those areas early Saturday, the ministry said that as of 9 a.m., eight people had been killed and more than 46 others were missing due to the rain.

Local transportation services were also disrupted, with local and express trains, as well as Shinkansen bullet trains, all suspended there, the ministry said.

No injuries were reported for Taiwanese expats and students in the country, according to the ministry, which has so far not issued any official travel alerts for these prefectures.

Travelers in Japan can call 090-8794-4568 for the ministry's Osaka office, or have their family members or friends in Taiwan call 0800-085-095 for the ministry.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel