Saturday, 22 September, 2018

2 feared dead after natural disaster hits Osaka in western Japan

Strong Quake Rattles Japan's Osaka, Causes No Major Damage Japan earthquake: Death toll climbs after 6.1 temblor strikes Osaka
Glenn Montgomery | 18 June, 2018, 13:10

Heavy shaking was reported across the Kansai region, but there was no tsunami alert issue after the quake, which was centered inland. More than 170,000 households in Osaka and neighboring Hyogo prefecture lost power temporarily but it was restored within two hours, the utility said.

The epicenter of the natural disaster was in the northern part of Osaka Prefecture, the Japan Meteorological Agency said, and no tsunami warning was issued. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said authorities were assessing damage and that their top priority was the safety of residents.

The JMA also said it is unlikely that another fault zone responsible for the 1995 Great Hanshin Earthquake that leveled the port city of Kobe had any influence on the June 18 quake based on the distance between the two points.

Despite having a relatively low magnitude, the quake caused quite a shake, registering a lower six on the Japanese experiential scale of up to seven, meaning it is hard to stay standing.

All trains and subways across Osaka city were halted, and the bullet train that travels through the region was halted as far as Fukuoka in southern Japan.

Honda Motor Co. and Mitsubishi Motors said they were resuming operations after temporary suspensions and safety checks. There was no damage to its Ohi and Takahama nuclear plants which are both located in the region, Kyodo News reported.

The quake struck at 8:00 am, as platforms would have been heaving with passengers waiting to board their commuter trains to work. Court sessions scheduled for the day were all cancelled in Osaka district, high and summary courts, while hundreds of public schools in the affected areas were also closed.

The 5.3 magnitude quake shook Osaka, on Japan's main Honshu Island, around 8 a.m. Monday local time (7 p.m. Sunday ET) according to the US Geological Survey (USGS).

Monday's temblor was the latest in a string of quakes over the last few days.

The Indonesian Consulate General (KJRI) in Osaka has opened an emergency hotline following a 6.1 Richer scale natural disaster striking the prefecture on Monday morning.

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