TOKYO, Aug. 15 (Xinhua) -- Japan’s weather agency said Typhoon Krosa is expected to make landfall in western Japan on Thursday, bringing with it torrential rains, heavy gusts and storm surges.
Evacuation advisories have been issued in Kochi, as well as prefectures in Shikoku and Kyushu, the agency said.
A level-4 advisory alert, the second highest on the scale which peaks at 5, has been issued for more than 270,000 households, or about 570,000 residents.
This alert level means that residents are advised to quickly evacuate to safer ground due to severity of the storm and the likelihood of potentially fatal accompanying weather-related phenomena.
According to the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA), as of 9:00 a.m. local time, Krosa was situated 60 km west of Cape Ashizuri in Kochi Prefecture.
Krosa, the 10th typhoon of the season, is moving in a northward direction, the agency said, and will likely cut a path through western Japan on Thursday.
While the agency said the typhoon has weakened over the past few days, downpours of over 1,200 millimeters and violent winds have still been forecast for some eastern and western regions that are facing the Pacific Ocean.
The agency said violent winds will soon be battering regions in Kyushu and Shikoku.
In terms of specific rainfall forecast for the 24 hours through noon on Friday, the JMA said downpours are expected to reach 800 millimeters in Shikoku and 500 mm in both the Tokai and Kinki regions.
The JMA has warned that Typhoon Krosa may cause landslides, particular in the prefectures of Nara, Oita, Ehime and Tokushima.
Krosa has already severely affected transportation systems, with 673 domestic flights for Thursday canceled due to the typhoon.
More flights may be cancelled henceforth, some carriers said, depending on the typhoon’s trajectory.
West Japan Railway Co. announced Wednesday it would suspend the majority of its Shinkansen bullet train services on Thursday.
It said that services between Shin-Osaka and Kokura will be cancelled and those on Kyushu Island running between Kokura and Hakata will only be running at a limited capacity on Thursday.
Shinkansen services between Tokyo and Shin-Osaka will also be operating at a limited service, Central Japan Railway Co. said, and Kyushu Railway Co. has announced it will reduce the number of its super-express bullet train services on Thursday.
Shikoku Railway Co. will completely halt operations on the western main island on Thursday, it said.
The weather agency has warned people to stay on alert for severe gusts of winds, torrential downpours leading to rivers bursting their banks, floods and mudslides, as well as storm surges and possible lightning strikes.