7.1-magnitude quake hits off coast of Japan's Fukushima

Ross Houston
February 13, 2021

A magnitude-7.1 quake struck off Japan's Fukushima Prefecture at 11:08 p.m. local time (1408 GMT) on Saturday, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA).

The epicentre, at a depth of 54 kilometres (34 miles), was located 91 kilometres (56 miles) northeast of Namie, Japan; 108 kilometres (67 miles) southeast of Watari, Japan; and 118 kilometres (73 miles) southeast of Sendai, Japan.

"Because (the 2011 quake) was an enormous one with a magnitude of 9.0, it's not surprising to have an aftershock of this scale 10 years later", said Kenji Satake, a professor at the University of Tokyo's Earthquake Research Institute.

The Tokyo electric company is checking for any irregularities at Fukushima's nuclear plants, according to NHK, the public radio service in Japan. He said that some trains in northeastern Japan had stopped running, and that other damage was still being checked.

A powerful natural disaster registering a magnitude of 7.1 rocked Japan Saturday night local time, with reports surfacing of widespread power outages and minor injuries. Japan Meteorological Agency said there was no initial information that a tsunami was imminent.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga headed into his office immediately after reports of the quake, where a crisis center has been set up.

The quake registered a strong 6 in the southern part of Miyagi, and the Nakadori central and Hamadori coastal regions of Fukushima, the agency said.

Aerial footage broadcast by NHK showed a hillside that collapsed onto a highway in Fukushima region, severing the road. He said there were no reports of major injuries.

Almost 10 years ago on March 11, 2011, three nuclear reactors in Fukushima melted down after a quake and tsunami in the area, killing more than 18,000 people.

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