41 dead in Japan quakes, over a thousand injured

The sun will be coming up in Japan on Sunday morning at about the time this post is published. The country is still trying to recover from the series of strong earthquakes that his the southern island of Kyushu. Nine people were killed in the first quake which hit Thursday night. A much stronger quake hit the same area after 1 am Saturday morning killing 32 more with an unknown number of people still trapped in the rubble of collapsed buildings. BBC reports:

Both quakes were shallow and struck close to the city of Kumamoto, causing huge damage to roads, bridges, tunnels, homes and buildings.

Big landslides have cut off remote mountain villages.

Some 100,000 households remain without power while around 400,000 homes are without water.

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe committed 20,000 defense forces to the effort to locate and rescue those trapped, calling the effort a “race against time.” Adding to the difficultly is the fact that there have been strong aftershocks nearly every hour since the quake. Also it has been raining which has contributed to landslides that wiped out major roads and left some remote areas cut off from help by road. This AP video gives a sense of the damage:

In addition to damaged roads and bridges, the area’s main airport was closed Saturday as a result of damage to the terminal and Shinkansen bullet train service was also canceled. This CBS news report sums up some of the damage:

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