Strong Earthquake Hits Japan
Wednesday, March 16, a powerful 7.3 earthquake occurred off the coast of Fukushima in northern Japan. A tsunami advisory ensued. The quake struck 36 miles below the sea. The advisory warned of potentially disastrous waves for coastal communities within 186 miles of the epicenter. The earthquake hit during the middle of the night, initially leaving more than two million households without electricity, but by 3 a.m. local time, the power was restored to most of the Tokyo area. So far only 4 deaths have been reported and 97 injuries.
The same area experienced a strong earthquake in 2011 which resulted in a tsunami, causing a nuclear disaster at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. Preliminary reports of this quake do not report any abnormalities at the Fukushima nuclear plant. Thursday, Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority reported that a fire alarm went off at the turbine building 5 reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi, but there was no fire.
Most of East Japan Railway services were suspended for checks. One train had partially derailed between Fukushima and Miyagi, but no one was hurt. Most of the damage consists of broken glass in buildings, and the expected trash and broken articles as objects fall off of shelves. Residents in the affected areas were warned to use extra caution for possible aftershocks for about a week.