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TOKYO, Friday (A.A.P.-Reuter) - Japanese police, troops and seamen," after a night of liorror, to-day battled 1 against cresting floods * to rescue the
living, and count tlie dead, in the worst flood disaster in Japanese memory.
Nearly all the lowlands of Kyushu, southernmost of Japan's four home is lands, were inundated dur ing the night. .
Radioed reports to-day described the cities of Isn hay a, population 65,u00, an:1 Omura, 57,000, as "cities of
These and other cities are reported feet deep in mud, rubble and swirling
Big houses have been washed away, transport buses have disappeared,
railway cars and coaches j have gone with crumbling j embankments, " patients j
were swept away with one hospital, bridges are down i and there are landslides | everywhere in the devas
tated area. I
Torrential rains, falling | unceasingly since" Wednes
day night, continued to-day 1 as Coastguardsmen struggl-1 ed vainly to stem the rush
ing flood waters, i
Communications have | been cut but radio ama teurs are sending out es timates that .thousands are
* dead. ,
One amateur radio oper ator estimated 1,000 dead in Isahaya City ' alone.
Rain gauges there are submerged and no more records of the rainfall can be kept, but a-report from Omura said that in one 3 hour period 675 millimetres of rain was recorded.
A Japanese pressman breasting the flood inl Omura 'saw the bodies of! children washed beside him. He-heard vain cries for. ajd from' the darkness.
Lightning: flashed and thunder roared a:s the flood Wave swept over Omura. immediately unundating at least 5,000 houses./
The Omura pressman re ported that__ the city was fighting a "torrential evil."
Simultaneously, an jfeye witness who escaped from Isahaya to [Nagasaki said that Isahaya was floodei. "in a moment." ' 1 .t;
Houses were carried. off °ne after another and, - a& the thunder and lightning became more and- "more
violent, tragic, unanswered cries for aid continued throughout the night.