A strong tornado struck the Koshigaya region in Saitama Prefecture, to the North of Tokyo, Japan earlier today (local time). The above screen grab was taken from the following video that was recently posted to YouTube:
Here is another YouTube video of the tornado from a different perspective (videography is not as good as the one above, but still revealing at times):
Damage is reported as widespread in the region, with regional media indicating 400+ buildings damaged and over 60 people injured.
The following photos of some of the damage were posted to twitter by Robert Speta, a U.S. meteorologist who is working in the area:
The Asahi Shimbun news agency posted the following damage photos:
Local radar (via Robert Speta on twitter) showed an apparent hook echo as the storm moved Northeast across the area:
Reportedly, over 30,000 households continue to be without power at this time.
Tornadoes are not unheard of in this area, but are unusual, especially compared to activity in the U.S. The most deadly tornado in recent years took place on November 7, 2006 when 9 people were killed as a tornado struck the Saroma, Hokkaido region.
On May 6 of last year, a tornado struck the Tsukuba, Ibaraki region, killing a 14 year old boy and damaging over 800 homes. An article on that tornado was posted on this blog at the time and can be found here.
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