04/09/2018 7:10 PM AEST | Updated 04/09/2018 9:04 PM AEST

Typhoon Jebi: Japan Lashed By Strongest Storm Since 1993

Bullet trains suspended and hundreds of flights cancelled.

High winds and heavy rain whipped the Japanese cities of Kobe and Osaka and surrounding areas on Tuesday as a powerful typhoon made landfall, disrupting train service and air travel.

Typhoon Jebi was heading north across a swath of Japan’s main island of Honshu toward the Sea of Japan. The storm had sustained winds of 160kph (100 mph) with gusts up to 215kph (130mph), the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

Japan’s Kyodo News service said it was the strongest typhoon to hit the country since 1993.

KYODO / Reuters
High waves triggered by Typhoon Jebi are seen at a fishing port in Aki, Kochi Prefecture, western Japan.
Toru Hanai / Reuters
A woman using an umbrella struggles against strong wind and rain caused by Typhoon Jebi, in Tokyo.
JIJI PRESS via Getty Images
A fallen tree from strong winds lies on Midosuji street in central Osaka on September 4, 2018, as Typhoon Jebi made landfall around midday in southwestern Japan.
JIJI PRESS via Getty Images
People walk against strong winds in Nagoya, Japan.
JIJI PRESS via Getty Images
Local government wokers remove a fallen tree along a pavement.

In Osaka, the Universal Studios Japan theme park and U.S. Consulate were both closed. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe canceled a scheduled trip to Kyushu, Japan’s southernmost main island, to oversee the government’s response to the typhoon, Kyodo said.

The typhoon first made landfall on the island of Shikoku and then again near Kobe on Honshu. Television footage showed fallen tree branches and high seas overflowing onto low-lying areas.

More than 700 flights have been cancelled, according to Japanese media tallies and a high-speed bullet train service was suspended from Tokyo west to Hiroshima.

Tokyo, the capital, escaped relatively unscathed, with some intermittent squalls.