One month has passed after deadly mudslides struck a city in central Japan, claiming 22 lives. Residents are now raising concerns over steps local authorities could have taken to protect the community.
A moment of silence was observed in the city of Atami Tuesday.
Reminders of the disaster are present everywhere. The search is continuing for five people still missing. Mudslides damaged more than 130 buildings and 300 people remain evacuees after being forced from their homes.
Officials suspect that the collapse of a soil mound at the upstream area exacerbated the damage. The piled-up dirt and soil was far over the amount stated in a construction plan submitted to the city.
Some affected residents say the disaster was man-made and wouldn't have happened if authorities had taken necessary measures to deal with the soil mound.
Local officials had repeatedly spoken with people involved in the construction plan about the landslide risk. But it's unclear whether authorities confirmed how far the prevention measures were actually carried out.
The residents say that they will consider filing a lawsuit claiming compensations.