BREAKING: Multiple casualties feared dead and 20 missing after huge landslide

Two people are feared dead and 20 are still missing after a huge landslide hit the central Japanese city of Atami.

Dozens of homes were buried or destroyed completely when a deluge of black water and debris crashed into rows of houses in the town on Saturday.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga has convened an emergency task force to tackle the crisis and asked people in the affected areas to remain on alert.

He told reporters: ‘There may be more heavy rainfalls and we need to be taking the highest caution.’

Atami, a hot-spring resort in the Shizuoka prefecture, has seen more rainfall in the first three days of July than it usually sees over the entire month.

The floods are a reminder of the natural disasters – including earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunami – that plague Japan, where the capital Tokyo is to host the summer Olympics starting this month.

News footage showed collapsed and half-submerged houses as water dashed the city with mud and debris.