Heavy snow is continuing to hit areas of northern Japan.

As of 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, snow accumulation reached 126 centimeters in Nishiwaga Town, the inland, mountainous area of Iwate Prefecture. That's more than four times the usual snowfall at this time of year.

Police of neighboring Akita Prefecture said 30 vehicles were backed up on a highway near the prefectural border after 1:00 a.m. on Wednesday, due to a trailer stuck in the snow.

A 15-kilometer-long section of the highway was closed for about four hours to clear the vehicles. The road reopened at 5:30 a.m.

A similar incident occurred on a different section of the highway later, leaving that stretch closed since 7:00 a.m.

Snow also continues falling in Iwamizawa City, in the northernmost prefecture of Hokkaido, which saw more than three times the usual snowfall.

Snow blanketed everything -- some parked vehicles are almost invisible.

Residents are busy clearing snow in front of their homes and shops. One elderly woman said removing so much snow is tough work, so she is doing so a little at a time.

One elderly man said he is fed up with removing snow, as snow piled up again after he cleared it three times the previous day. He said he hopes to see less snow for the rest of the season.