Just days after Japan's northernmost island of Hokkaido hit record heat, temperatures dropped to one of the lowest recorded temperatures in a month on Thursday (Aug 12) as a result of a cold snap.
At the same time, torrential rains hit the island in the southwest of Kyushu Island, and in some areas there was as much rainfall in one day as usually falls in the whole month of August.
Such extreme weather raises concerns about the impact of climate change on Japan, where 7,943 people were hospitalized in hospitals across the country last week due to the scorching heat.
Two weeks after the highest temperature in history was recorded in Wakkanai, Hokkaido on July 29, + 32.7 degrees Celsius, on Thursday at dawn the temperature dropped to +2.6 degrees Celsius, which was the lowest in August in the city. over the past 128 years.
Sapporo, 300 km south, was chilly 13.9 degrees Celsius Thursday morning, compared to 26 degrees Celsius recorded at 7 am Sunday when the Olympic men's marathon kicked off. The combination of heat and brutal humidity forced 30 of the 106 participants to retire.
In Kyushu, Japan's third-largest island, warnings were issued Thursday to evacuate some 400,000 people due to the risk of flooding and landslides as a slowly moving rain front hit the region.
Evacuations have been announced in six of the seven Kyushu prefectures - Fukuoka, Saga, Nagasaki, Kumamoto, Oita and Kagoshima.
Heavy rain caused the suspension of high-speed trains between Kumamoto and Kagoshima-Chuo stations on Thursday.
The Japan Meteorological Agency has warned that a rain front will sweep across the country over the next week and is calling for extreme caution in many areas.