Eastern Japan was rocked Wednesday night by a powerful earthquake felt as far as Tokyo, measuring 7.4, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA), which also sent a small tsunami across much of the east coast. at least one dead and dozens injured.
Early on Thursday morning, authorities lifted the tsunami warning and restored electricity that had been cut overnight in more than two million homes. At least one person has died in the coastal town of Soma and dozens more were injured in the quake, Japan’s Kyodo news agency reported, with authorities saying they had received numerous emergency calls.
The epicenter of the quake, which struck at 11:36 p.m. local time (3:36 p.m. in Paris), was off the coast of the Fukushima department, 60 km deep, according to the JMA. This authority has issued a warning for waves of one meter high. In Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture, north of Fukushima, waves of 30 cm were eventually measured, according to the JMA, which had urged residents to stay away from the coast.
The quake, felt long and strong, including in Tokyo, robbed more than two million households of electricity, including nearly 700,000 in the Japanese capital, according to operator Tepco† Minor aftershocks were recorded in the northeast in the first hours after the first earthquake and evacuation instructions to shelters were issued in some places in the region.
Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Under Surveillance
The JR East railway company, which serves northeastern Japan, has announced significant disruptions to its network.
According to Japan’s Nuclear Safety Agency (NRA), no anomaly has been discovered at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, which was badly damaged by a massive tsunami caused by an earthquake measuring 9 on the Richter scale. At the county’s other nuclear power plant, Fukushima Daini, which has also been shut down since 2011, as well as the Onagawa power plant (Miyagi County), the pumps for cooling spent fuel briefly stopped, but quickly recovered and worked. the NRA later.
Japan is still plagued by this 11-year-old disaster that left more than 18,500 people dead and missing, and more than 165,000 people forced to evacuate their homes due to radiation risks. Located at the intersection of several major tectonic plates, Japan is regularly hit by earthquakes and has strict construction standards so that the buildings can withstand strong vibrations.
More than 33,000 people are still displaced after the Fukushima disaster
Japan observed a minute’s silence last Friday in memory of the 2011 disaster that killed more than 18,500 people and left more than 165,000 people in Fukushima prefecture forced to evacuate their homes due to radioactive emissions from the damaged power plant. , where the cores of three nuclear reactors had melted.
Local authorities still have 33,365 displaced persons, 80% of whom live outside the Fukushima prefecture.
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In addition to the massive project of decontamination and decommissioning of the nuclear power plant, many other challenges remain, starting with the reputation of local food products, although their safety is closely monitored. Located at the intersection of several major tectonic plates, Japan is regularly hit by earthquakes and has strict construction standards so that the buildings can withstand strong vibrations.