TOKYO - A powerful typhoon that washed four American airmen in Okinawa out to sea slammed central Japan on Monday, forcing the cancellation of more than 600 flights.
Phanfone had earlier been downgraded from a super-typhoon to a Category One shadow of its former self but Japan's 18th typhoon of the season still packed a punch. Wind gusts of up to 100 mph and at least a foot and a half of rainfall meant that dozens of schools were closed as Phanfone barrelled its way through the capital of 13 million people.
At least 21,000 homes lost power. In the low-lying areas west of Tokyo, whole towns were inundated. But just minutes after the eye of the storm had passed, blue skies appeared over Tokyo and heavy rains thinned into a light drizzle.