TOKYO, Aug. 10 (Xinhua) -- Many parts of Japan are experiencing sweltering conditions as a heat wave with temperatures rising above 40 degrees Celsius grips the nation for the first time in six years, the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) said Saturday.
The agency said that temperatures of 40.7 degrees Celsius were registered in Shimanto City in Kochi Prefecture, western Japan, the fourth highest logged in the country, and Kofu City in Yamanashi Prefecture, central Japan also saw the mercury rise above 40 degrees.
The agency also said that temperatures hit 40.5 degrees in Koshu, Yamanashi Prefecture, 40.1 degrees in Tatebayashi, Gunma Prefecture, while Tokyo experienced temperatures rising to 37.4 degrees on Saturday.
Citizens have been advised by authorities to drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration and heat stroke and use air conditioners and fans where possible.
Meanwhile, torrential rain triggered severe floods and mudslides in parts of northern Japan, leaving at least five people dead, officials said Saturday.
In the city of Senboku, in Akita prefecture, local officials said at least four people were found dead after a mudslide destroyed eight houses.
One person was left in a critical condition and two others were injured following the mudslide, local media reported.
The flooding, caused by a record downpour of 88 millimeters of rain per hour in Semboku on Friday, with 270 mm falling logged by Friday evening, caused streets to be washed out, local officials said.
Local broadcaster TBS showed images of people wading through waterlogged streets on Saturday in the town of Yahaba, in Iwate prefecture, as a team of some 280 police officers, firefighters and self-defense forces continued the search for two people who are still unaccounted for.
According to local officials, no injuries or death have been reported in the area, although an evacuation order was issued to at least 300 residents on Friday.
Officials added that one person died following a mudslide in the city of Hanamaki, in Iwate prefecture, after being buried in a mudslide, and another body was found in a river in the town of Nishiwaga.