Nearly 2,000 Taiwanese stranded in Japan after storm, quake

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Passengers including foreign tourists are crowded at New Chitose Airport which got back normal in Sapporo City, Hokkaido Prefecture on September 7, 2018. The severe earthquake registering 7 on the Japanese seismic scale in Atsuma Town, Iburi district of Hokkaido occurred at a.m. 3 on September 6th. According to the Meteorological Agency, the depth of the epicenter was estimated to be about 37 kilometers, and the indicative magnitude was estimated to be 6.7. 16 people died and 25 people were still missing as of 2 p.m. 7th. ( The Yomiuri Shimbun via AP Images )

Taipei, Sept. 7 (CNA)-About 2,000 Taiwanese tourists are stranded in Japan in the wake of a typhoon and an earthquake that struck Osaka and Hokkaido, respectively, this week, Taiwan’s Tourism Bureau said Friday.

The bureau said 982 tourists in 25 groups have been stuck in Osaka since Kansai International Airport was closed Tuesday due to massive flooding caused by Typhoon Jebi.

In the northern island of Hokkaido, a powerful earthquake on Thursday caused the shutdown of New Chitose Airport, leaving 889 Taiwanese tourists in 29 groups stranded, the bureau said.

In Taiwan, 1,194 people in 47 tour groups have either postponed or canceled their trips to Osaka since Typhoon Jebi slammed into Japan on Tuesday, according to the bureau.

Two days later, in the early hours of Thursday, a magnitude 6.7 earthquake struck Hokkaido triggering landslides and power cuts, which prompted the cancellation of travel there by 953 Taiwanese visitors in 29 tour groups.

Meanwhile, Taiwanese carriers China Airlines, EVA Airways and Tigerair Taiwan were forced to cancel most of their flights to Kansai airport this week due to the storm and instead have been operating additional flights to nearby Okayama, Takamatsu and Chubu Centrair airports.

On Friday, EVA Air said it was deploying bigger aircraft to New Chitose Airport and Hakodate Airport, which have been reopened.