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Snowstorms, high winds set to lash Japanese archipelago on Jan. 7-8

In this Jan. 2, 2021 file photo, vehicles drive through falling snow in the northern Japanese city of Yuzawa, Akita Prefecture. (Mainichi/Hiroshi Takano)

TOKYO -- The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) is warning of snowstorms, rough seas and generally tempestuous weather for the Japanese archipelago on Jan. 7 and 8 due to a quickly developing low-pressure system.

    The agency is advising residents to be on their guard against transport disruptions, avalanches and dangerous snow accretion.

    The low-pressure front is expected to move from the Sea of Japan to the north of the country on Jan. 7, and on to waters northeast of Hokkaido on the morning of Jan. 8, with a chilly winter weather pressure system to set in on Jan. 9.

    The JMA is forecasting heavy snow for large parts of the country over the 24 hours ending at 6 a.m. on Jan. 8, including a maximum of 70-90 centimeters projected for the Hokuriku region on the Sea of Japan, 50-70 cm for northeastern Japan's Tohoku region plus western Japan's Kinki area, 40-60 cm in the northern prefecture of Hokkaido as well as in the Pacific coastal region of Tokaido, and 30-50 cm for the Chugoku area of western Japan.

    The following 24 hours is expected to bring another maximum of 70-90 cm of snow to Hokuriku, 60-80 cm in the Tokai and Kinki regions, 40-60 cm in the Chugoku area, and 30-50 cm in Hokkaido and the Tohoku region.

    On Jan. 7, brisk winds reaching up to 97.2 kilometers per hour, with gusts of up to 144 kph, are forecast for the Tohoku area. Winds of up to 90 kph with gusts topping out at 126 kph are expected in the Hokuriku and Kinki regions, while Hokkaido and Chugoku are set to see 82.8 kph winds with gusts of up to 126 kph. Western and southwestern Japan's Shikoku and northern Kyushu regions are forecast to get winds of 72 kph, gusting up to 108 kph, while the southernmost Okinawa region is set for 64.8 kph winds, also gusting up to 108 kph.


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