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Earthquake hits off Kyushu, Japan; small tsunamis reported

14 November 2015 09:06 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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A powerful 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck off the southwestern coast of Japan at 5:51 a.m. Saturday, the Japan Meteorological Agency and U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said, with Japanese authorities reporting several small tsunamis on at least two islands.

The USGS put the epicenter of the shallow quake about 160 kilometers from the town of Makurazaki in Kagoshima Prefecture; though no major damage was initially reported.

Tsunamis measuring one meter in height were observed on several islands, public broadcaster NHK reported, citing local authorities, who were urging people in low lying areas to move away to higher ground for safety.

Authorities said larger tsunamis were still possible and urged caution more than an hour after the earthquake.

Japan’s islands are situated at the juncture of several tectonic plates and experience a number of relatively violent quakes every year.

But building codes are rigorous and regular disaster drills are held, helping to ensure that despite their frequency and magnitude, quakes usually pass without loss of life or significant damage to property in Japan. (AFP)

 
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