TOKYO: Tokyo woke up Thursday to its first November snowfall in more than half a century, leaving commuters to grapple with train disruptions and slick streets.
Snow began falling before dawn with the mercury approaching zero as a cold weather system moved south.
The Japan Meterological Agency said it was the first time snow had fallen in November in central Tokyo since 1962.
Amounts were greater in suburban areas closer to mountains but even central Tokyo saw brief accumulations, which the agency forecast to be as high as two centimetres (one inch).
That was the first November accumulation since records began in 1875, the agency said.
Tokyo, which spreads over a wide area and includes many suburbs, enjoys relatively mild winters compared to some other parts of the country where snowfall is more frequent.
Television footage showed a resident in the western suburb of Hachioji shovelling snow as the pavement, trees and park benches were covered in white powder.
Train and subway services were temporarily suspended or delayed especially in western Tokyo, affecting thousands of commuters during the morning rush hour.