The town, located along the Pacific Ocean on the northeast coast of Japan, has a population of 17,000 residents.
Japan Self-Defense Forces are trying to help local authorities find residents, Japanese public broadcasting station NHK reported. So far, they've only been able to confirm that about 7,500 residents were successfully evacuated to dozens of shelters after the massive earthquake and tsunami, NHK reported.
In Sendai, the largest nearby city, police said between 200 and 300 bodies were found along the coast. Many more are believed to have been buried in the rubble or washed out with the waves.
Military helicopters grabbed survivors from rooftops and streets were littered with remnants of the destruction. The U.S. agreed to send helicopters from Okinawa to assist rescue efforts.
Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan said more than 3,000 people have been rescued, Kyodo News Agency reported.
"We'd first like to focus on saving lives and secondly the comfort of the evacuees," Kan said. "There will be many resources that will be needed for this evacuation process."