Snowfall in the city of Toyama, central Japan, has surpassed one meter for the first time in 35 years.
The Meteorological Agency says a strong winter pressure pattern and cold air mass are bringing heavy snow to areas along the Sea of Japan coast, especially the Hokuriku region.
More snow is expected through Sunday.
Agency officials warn of possible traffic disruptions. They also urge people to be alert for avalanches, power outages and other accidents.