News Column

7.3-Magnitude Earthquake Hits Northeast Japan

December 7, 2012

A 7.3-magnitude earthquake struck Friday off the coast of northeastern Japan and a tsunami warning was issued for Miyagi prefecture, officials said.

There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage but authorities said 3-foot waves rolled ashore in Miyagi -- in the same region where a massive earthquake and tsunami killed thousands of people last year.

The new quake shook buildings in Tokyo nearly 300 miles away and some roads were closed and rail service suspended, CNN reported.

Kyodo News reported the Japan Meteorological Agency issued the tsunami warning for the Miyagi region after the quake struck after 5 p.m.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said there was no threat to the wider Pacific Ocean.

The earthquake hit off the east coast of Honshu, Japan's largest island where Tokyo is located, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The quake, at a depth of 22.3 miles, was reported 152 miles southeast of Kamaishi and 287 miles east-northeast of Tokyo, the USGS said.

Kyodo News reported no abnormalities were detected at nuclear plants, including those in Fukushima prefecture where a 9-magnitude earthquake followed by a gigantic tsunami in March 2011 killed more than 15,000 people and crippled the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear plant.

The Miyagi region suffered heavy damage in the 2011 quake.

Source: Copyright United Press International 2012

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