An earthquake with an estimated magnitude of 6.1 shook a wide area of northeastern Japan early Sunday afternoon, the Meteorological Agency said.
No tidal wave warnings were issued and there were no immediate reports of damage or serious injuries, according to local police and firefighters.
A 66-year-old woman suffered minor injuries when she fell down stairs while trying to evacuate a building, the firefighters said.
The quake’s estimated focus was about 45 km below the seabed off northern Miyagi Prefecture. It struck around 12:37 p.m. and registered in the lower-5 range on the Japanese intensity scale of 7 in the towns of Tajiri, Kannari, Toyoma and Monou in the northern part of Miyagi Prefecture, the agency said.
It registered a 4 in the northern and southern coastal areas as well as in the southern inland area of Iwate Prefecture, the agency said, adding that it recorded a 2 in some parts of Hokkaido, Tokyo, Yokohama and Shizuoka.
Due to the quake, services on the Tohoku Shinkansen Line between Shiroishi Zao and Morioka stations and on the Tohoku Line between Matsushima and Ishikoshi stations were temporarily halted, reported East Japan Railway Co.
Both lanes on the Tohoku Expressway from Izumi to Furukawa were temporarily closed for inspections, expressway officials said.
Nuclear power plants located in Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures were not affected by the quake and operated as usual, officials of two electric power firms said. The Onagawa plant of Tohoku Electric Power Co. operates in Miyagi, while the Fukushima No. 1 and No. 2 plants of Tokyo Electric Power Co. are in Fukushima.
Another earthquake followed at around 1:47 p.m. with an estimated magnitude of 4.2 on the open-ended Richter scale, the agency said. The focus was about 50 km below the seabed off the northern part of Miyagi Prefecture. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.
A quake in the lower-5 level on the Japanese intensity scale is strong enough to make it difficult for some people to move and can cause books to fall from shelves. A level-4 quake will wake up most sleeping people.
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