• Kyodo News


A 6.4-magnitude temblor jolted Shizuoka Prefecture and its vicinity, including Tokyo, on Tuesday evening, serving notice that Friday’s unfolding tragedy in the Tohoku region may not be over.

No tsunami warning was issued and no major damage was reported at the Hamaoka nuclear plant in Omaezaki, Shizuoka Prefecture, or at Shizuoka Airport, according to Chubu Electric Power Co. and local police.

A total of 29 people were taken to hospitals by ambulance following the quake at 10:31 p.m. Two were seriously hurt and 27 had suffered minor injuries, local authorities said.

More than 21,000 households in Fujinomiya, a city in the north of the prefecture, suffered a power outage, and the water supply was cut off for 42 households, they said.

The quake registered upper 6 on the Japanese seismic intensity scale of 7 in the eastern part of Shizuoka, and upper 5 in the eastern part of neighboring Yamanashi Prefecture, according to the Meteorological Agency.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. said its power stations are continuing to operate.

Tokaido Shinkansen Line service was temporarily suspended between Shinagawa and Hamamatsu stations, while sections of the Tomei and Chuo expressways were closed.

A blackout affecting around 22,000 households occurred in Fujinomiya, police said.

The meteorological agency said the focus of the quake was in the eastern part of Shizuoka at a depth of 14 km. The agency initially estimated the quake’s magnitude at 6.0 but later revised it to 6.4.

The quake was not related to the massive Tokai earthquakes that occur every 100 to 150 years in the central Tokai region, the agency said.

‘Pluthermal’ nixed

The mayor of Omaezaki, Shizuoka Prefecture, said he won’t authorize planned plutonium-thermal power generation at the city’s Hamaoka nuclear plant in the wake of the crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 facility.

“It would be difficult to implement (the plan) from the standpoint of citizens’ feelings,” Mayor Shigeo Ishihara told reporters.

Chubu Electric Power Co. has been planning to start the “pluthermal” power generation at the No. 4 reactor of the Hamaoka plant after completing the central government’s safety assessment on its earthquake resistance and winning approval from Omaezaki and nearby cities.

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