7 Missing in Japan Tunnel Collapse

Posted December 2nd, 2012 at 2:05 am (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

Japanese say at least seven people are missing after part of a highway tunnel collapsed early Sunday west of Tokyo.

Television reports showed black smoke billowing from the 4.7 kilometer Sasago tunnel in Yamanashi prefecture, about 80 kilometers west of Tokyo.

Firefighters put out the flames at 11 am , about three hours after the accident occurred, but rescuers had to suspend work in the tunnel for fear of another collapse.

Officials say two people were taken to a hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Japan public broadcaster NHK says one of its reporters was driving through the tunnel as it began to disintegrate behind him. The journalist reported thick smoke and fire after making his escape. The broadcaster reported a stream of people walking out of the tunnel after abandoning their vehicles.