16 Oct 2013

At least 13 killed as typhoon hits Japan

7:19 pm on 16 October 2013

At least 13 people have been killed as Typhoon Wipha churns past Tokyo, causing landslides that swallowed houses on a Japanese island.

About 30 more people are unaccounted for on Wednesday after five houses were destroyed or swept away by landslides and floods on Oshima island, 120km south of the Japanese capital.

Officials say a further three people are missing in the greater Tokyo area, the ABC reports.

Police and fire-fighters have not been able to get to many areas but the bodies of two of those who died were discovered in a swollen river, while another was pulled from a crushed house.

Further north, the operator of the battered Fukushima nuclear plant is releasing rain water trapped inside its barrages, but says its radiation reading is within safety limits.