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Rain slows search of Hiroshima mud

by The Associated Press | August 23, 2014 at 3:22 a.m.

TOKYO — Forecasts of more heavy rains in western Japan raised the risk Friday of further landslides in Hiroshima, hindering efforts to locate dozens of people still missing after hills around the city collapsed this week.

The Fire and Disaster Management Agency said 40 people were confirmed dead and 47 were unaccounted for after torrents of mud, rocks and timber swept through at least five valleys in Hiroshima’s suburbs after heavy rains early Wednesday. Dozens more were injured.

Among those killed was a rescue worker who was swept away in a landslide while trying to save a 3-year-old boy, who also died. Noriyoshi Masaoka, a 53-year-old firefighter, was still holding the boy in his arms when they were dug out of the mud.

“He risked his life, he worked so hard,” Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui said, his voice trembling. Authorities issued evacuation orders Friday for 4,386 people in Hiroshima because of fears of further danger.

Print Headline: Rain slows search of Hiroshima mud

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