Major earthquake hits central Japan, triggering Tsunami warning

Photo Courtesy: Reuters

Kathmandu: A powerful earthquake measuring 7.6 in magnitude has struck Ishikawa in central Japan, prompting a tsunami warning and evacuation advisories for residents as they brace for potential aftershocks.

Reports from public broadcaster NHK on Monday indicated that a tsunami, approximately 1 meter high (3.3 feet), has already impacted parts of the west coast along the Sea of Japan, with expectations of a larger wave.

The Japan Meteorological Agency has issued tsunami warnings for coastal prefectures including Ishikawa, Niigata, and Toyama. Both US and Japanese agencies have warned of hazardous tsunami waves potentially reaching up to 5 meters (16.4 feet) along the north coast of central Japan within 300 km (186 miles) of the earthquake’s epicenter.

In the aftermath of the quake, over 36,000 households in Ishikawa and Toyama prefectures experienced power outages, according to Hokuriku Electric Power.

Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority reported no irregularities at nuclear power plants along the Sea of Japan, including those at Kansai Electric Power’s Ohi and Takahama plants in Fukui prefecture. The Shika plant in Ishikawa, located closest to the quake’s epicenter, had already halted its two reactors for regular inspection and reported no impact from the earthquake.

Japan, being one of the most earthquake-prone countries globally, experienced a devastating earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011, resulting in nearly 20,000 casualties, widespread destruction, and nuclear meltdowns in Fukushima.