Japan earthquake: 7.1-magnitude tremor hits off Fukushima coast

Bethany DawsonSat, 13 February 2021, 5:07 pm

 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

An earthquake with a magnitude of 7.1 has hit off the coast of eastern Japan on Saturday 23:13 JMT (14:13 GMT), the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

The epicentre of the earthquake was off the coast of Fukushima prefecture at a depth of 60 km (36 miles), the agency said, adding that a tsunami warning had not been issued.

A liquor shop's manager clears the damaged bottles following an earthquake in Fukushima, northeastern JapanAP
A liquor shop’s manager clears the damaged bottles following an earthquake in Fukushima, northeastern JapanAP

Top government spokesperson Katsnunobu Kato has stated that at least 950,000 homes were without power as of midnight JMT (15:00 GMT).

The Japan Times is reporting that several residents of Fukushima and Miyagi were taken to hospitals, but there have yet been no reports of any serious injuries or deaths.

Experts are warning of aftershocks over the next several days, including the possibility of larger quakes.

The Tokyo Electric Power Company has confirmed that there were no irregularities at the Fukushima Daiichi and Daini nuclear power plants, or at the Kahiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear, nor have there been any changes to the radiation levels around the plants.

The quake comes close to the 10 year anniversary of the 2011 Fukushima earthquake which triggered the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato (R) rushes into the prime minister official residence after a strong earthquake hit northeastern JapanEPA
Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato (R) rushes into the prime minister official residence after a strong earthquake hit northeastern JapanEPA

The 2011 earthquake lasted for six minutes and reached a magnitude of 9.0–9.1. The quake triggered a tsunami that reached heights of up to 40.5 meters.

The quake, considered the largest in the history of Japan and the fourth largest in the world, resulted in 15,899 deaths and 6,157 additional injuries.

The National Police Agency of Japan on 10 September stated the quake completely demolished 121,778 buildings.

Japan is one of the world’s most seismically active areas, and it accounts for roughly 20 per cent of the world’s earthquakes that are magnitude 6 or greater.

File folders are seen scattered on the floor of the Kyodo News bureau after a strong quake in Sendai, Miyagi PrefectureREUTERS
File folders are seen scattered on the floor of the Kyodo News bureau after a strong quake in Sendai, Miyagi PrefectureREUTERS