The quake measured a strong 6 on the Japanese seismic intensity scale (the second-highest level) and disrupted Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures in the Tohoku region around 11:08 local time on Saturday night. Fortunately, no tsunami warning has been issued for the island country. Several residents were taken to the hospital, but no serious injuries have been reported. Also, top government spokesman Katsunobu Kato revealed that at least 950,000 homes nationwide were without power as of midnight.
The epicenter of the quake was off the coast of Fukushima which is about 135 miles north of Tokyo. The earthquake was so strong that it shook buildings in the capital city. Fukushima is also home to the country’s no. 1 nuclear power plant and is close to the Japan Atomic Power Co.’s inactive Tokai No. 2 nuclear power plant in the village of Tokai, Ibaraki Prefecture. However, operators at both locations report no issues or abnormalities.
The Japanese government is now setting up a task force to assess damages and rescue potential victims. Saturday’s earthquake comes less than a month before the 10th anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake which took place on March 11, 2011, and was the strongest quake since April 2020.