Heavy snowfall disrupts transport, 1,200 cars stuck


TOKYO — About 1,200 cars were stranded Monday in central Japan as heavy snowfall blanketed in many parts of the country.

As a winter snowstorm dumped more snow on to the Sea of Japan coastline, local authorities closed sections of major roads and highways in Fukui prefecture.

The fresh snowfall pushed the snow accumulation to 64 centimeters in Kanazawa and to 118 centimeters in Fukui, surpassing 100 centimeters for the first time in 25 years, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

A winter pressure pattern also brought more snow to Uonuma, Niigata prefecture, pushing the accumulation to more than 400 centimeters. The region is known as Japan’s snow country and is one of the regions with the heaviest snowfall worldwide. Japanese media reported that tons of snow was piled up on the roofs of houses in the region. While snowploughs ran round the clock to keep the roads clear, many residents shoveled the snow off, clearing roofs.