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Cars stranded, trains affected by continued heavy snow across Japan

Vehicles were stranded and train services affected Saturday as heavy snow continued over parts of Japan, with the weather agency warning of further traffic disruption from slippery roads due to more snowfall through the weekend.
In central Japan, many cars were stuck. Around 120 vehicles were stranded on the Hokuriku Expressway in Fukui Prefecture due to an accident. About 80 cars could not move on the Noetsu Expressway in Toyama Prefecture, with a section temporarily closed, transport authorities said.
Separately, about 80 vehicles were stuck temporarily on part of the Hokuriku Expressway in Niigata Prefecture, northwest of Tokyo.
Heavy snowfall was mainly seen in areas facing the Sea of Japan, registering a record high in some parts.
Vehicles were also stranded in the northeastern city of Akita.
In Toyama, an 81-year-old man has died after he told his family on Friday he would step out to clear snow in front of the house. He was found dead later in the day.
Tohoku shinkansen bullet train services were temporarily disrupted, while other bullet train services in Hokkaido, as well as Akita and Yamagata prefectures, both in northeastern Japan, were delayed.
Other shinkansen trains elsewhere were either suspended or ran at reduced speed.
The Japan Meteorological Agency said that in the 24-hour period through Saturday there was more than 1 meter of snowfall in Joetsu, Niigata Prefecture, and 45 centimeters of snowfall in Sakata, Yamagata, both record highs.
In central Akita, there was 60 cm of snowfall Saturday noon.
The city of Toyama saw accumulated snow of 120 centimeters, marking the first time it has exceeded more than 100 cm since February 1986. Snow also accumulated in the Kyushu region in the country's southwest.


© KYODO
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