The death toll from Japan’s worst typhoon since 2004 is now reportedly close to 40 with a desperate search underway for the scores of people still missing.
Talas slammed into Japan’s main island over the weekend, wreaking havoc on a country still coming to terms with March’s catastrophic earthquake and tsunami.
Although the torrential – and in some places record – rain has now eased in the worst affected areas, it has caused mudslides, burst river banks, destroyed infrastructure and led to power blackouts.
By Monday evening, evacuation orders remained in place for some 100,000 people with several thousand reported stranded.
The government said the country’s main electricity plants were not affected but hundreds of lines are down.
It is a big test for Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda, who was sworn in one day before Talas hit.