Heavy rains in Japan have triggered the evacuation of a southwestern region, affecting a quarter of a million people.

At least 22 people have died in the deluge, which began three days ago, according to Japanese broadcaster NHK.

Japan’s meterological agency is warning of torrential rains this weekend due to a warm mass from the south. In fact, more than 800 millimeters has fallen on a section of Kumamoto Prefecture since Wednesday.

Evaucation orders have been issued for more than 250,000 people in the Japanese island of Kyushu, as rains pounded the region Saturday.

Hiroaki Aoki, an official from Fukuoka prefecture, told AFP news agency there have been more than 181 landslides in  Fukuoka prefecture, where shelters have been set up in schools and public buildings.

Most of the fatalities so far have occurred around the city of Aso on the island, where 19 people have died in house collapses and landslides.

The Japan Meteorological Agency said the city has been soaked with more than 75 centimetres of rain fall in 72 hours.

fukuoka-japan-map

Fukuoka prefecture, Japan Google Map