Deadliest Japan tornado strikes

Found this interesting:

CNN / AP said:
TOKYO, Japan (AP) -- Japan's deadliest tornado on record tore through a remote northern town on Tuesday, killing nine and leaving one woman unconscious, police said. About two dozen people were injured.
The tornado knocked out electricity to hundreds of homes and flipped over cars in the town of Saroma, on the northern island of Hokkaido.
Local television showed a scene of devastation, with a wide swath of collapsed buildings, badly damaged cars and utility poles strewn across streets. Many of the victims were construction workers building a tunnel near the town, officials said.
--> Record Japan tornado kills 9



Anyone know how common tornadoes are in Japan (other than "rare")?
 
I can remember a few stronger ones reported in/around Tokyo before...but nothing like a killer tornado such as this one. Makes you wonder what implications down the road will be on this side of the globe from this same storm. The Pacific jet looks fast and furious so things may get more and more interesting as the usual stormy month of November rolls on.
 
Fujita covers Japanese tornadoes on p. 54 of his book "Mystery of Severe Storms." He has several case studies, including one in Mobara in 1990 that injured 60 and damaged 1,000 houses.
 
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Holy crap! That is some sad and interesting news! I found this abstract when google-ing "japan tornado"

http://ams.allenpress.com/perlserv/....1175/1520-0442(1997)010<1730:ASSOTA>2.0.CO;2

They are more common than I thought...

A database on tornadoes and waterspouts in Japan from 1961 to 1993, which is believed to be most reliable at present, was compiled after an extensive survey of apparently almost all existing literature. Six hundred and seventy-seven tornadoes and 148 waterspouts were cataloged in the database...

It's a pretty interesting read. I'd like to find some met data from the recent event. Was it from a supercell? It would have to be judging by the estimated windspeed and damage.
 
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Japans deadliest tornado

Wonder if anyone got any footage of this tornado?
 
Japanese tornado climatology

Ninno et al is an excellent resource; perhaps the single best available on Japanese tornadoes. Tornadoes are not all that rare in Japan, there are about 25 per year, but there have been very few fatalities through the years. Between 1961-1993 the largest fatality event killed only 2; the record for deadliest recent Japanese tornado was broken in September on Kyūshū, and then broken again with the Hokkaidō event. Deadlier events have occurred in the more distant past.

I haven't found much on the Kyūshū tornado, but I believe it may be typhoon related. Many Japanese tornadoes are tropical cyclone related.

Also, although there have not been significant fatality events, there are intense tornadoes in Japan so it is only a matter of time before a high fatality event occurs (the same is true for much of Europe which does have a history of high fatality events if you go way back). The Mobara tornado was violent and destructive, destroying over 1000 homes and injuring more than 60. A major tornado damaged about 480 houses in the southwest suburbs of Tokyo in 1964.

From Ninno et al, 1997:
If one looks back to records on tornado damage in the last 10 decades, however, much more serious damages are found: The tornado in Miyazaki city on 26 September 1881 demolished the Miyazaki Elementary School and caused 16 fatalities (Kasamura 1979). On 23 September 1903, an elementary school in Yodobashi Town, Toyotama County, Tokyo Prefecture, was hit by a tornado. Ten persons were killed and 14 persons were injured (Shimada 1977). The tornado in Toyohashi City, Aichi Prefecture, on 28 November 1941 killed 12 persons, injured 177 persons, and either completely destroyed or severely damaged 347 houses (Tokita 1970). Six persons were killed and 8 persons were injured by a tornado in Tomiye City, Nagasaki Prefecture, on 10 November 1957 (Takei 1963).
 
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