TOKYO (TR) – Eleven people were rushed to hospitals here after choking on mochi rice cakes on Sunday, with two of the victims later being confirmed dead, authorities said.
The Tokyo Fire Department said a total of 11 people, aged between 28 and 89, were rushed to hospitals after choking on mochi by 9 p.m., Nippon News Network reports (Jan. 2).
Of the 11 victims, an 81-year-old man from Itabashi Ward and a 60-year-old man from Kita Ward choked to death from mochi they ate at home, authorities said.
The fire department is urging citizens to cut mochi into smaller bite-size pieces and chew thoroughly before swallowing.
Update: The number of persons hospitalized has climbed to 20 as of January 2, reports Nippon News Network (Jan. 3).