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Japan Jolts With 6.0 Magnitude Earthquake Causing Death, Building-Collapse, Road And Rail Block

April 15
7:54 AM 2016

A 6.0 magnitude earthquake has hit southwestern Japan on Thursday causing death of nine people while injuring more than 800. Houses have been toppled down and an expressway has been crunched and buckled. However, the nuclear regulator informs that nuclear reactors inside the power plants are safe.  

US Geological Survey (USGS) has primarily estimated at 6.2, but later on revised down to 6. Epicenter of the earthquake has been determined at 11 kilometers (Km) east of the city of Kumamoto, reports Reuters.

However, Japan Meteorological Agency estimates the magnitude at 6.5 and finds the place of earthquake origination at a shallow depth of 11 km in Kumamoto. The Japanese scale has exhibited a maximum magnitude of 7 in the town of Mashiki in the prefecture, according to a report published in Japan Today.

The damage has been most severe in the hardest hit town of Mashiki, located 15 km away from Kumamoto city. Buildings in Mashiki have fallen to the ground scattering glass and debris.

The dead include five women and four men. Only a dead man is below 20, others are aged within the age range of 50 to 90. Eight out of the nine victims are from Mashiki, reports Associated Press.

At least, one of the victims has died after being crushed by a collapsing building. More than 400 people have taken treatment from the hospital. However, no Tsunami warning has taken place.

Some 44,400 people have been evacuated and more than aftershocks have been recorded following the earthquake hit at 9.30 pm local time. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has vowed to do the best while continuing life saving and rescue operations throughout the night.

People have reportedly taken shelter in parking lots and other open spaces fearing further building collapses. Kyoko Electric Power Co. Inc. informs that around 16,500 households, in and around Mashiki, has remained without power supply till 2 am. No irregularity has been detected at three nuclear plants on the southern major island of Kyushu and nearby Shikoku, informs The Nuclear Regulation Authority.

An earthquake with magnitude of 9 has jolted the northern region of Tokyo duuring March, 2011. Tsunami waves, as aftermaths of the earthquake washed away the coastal areas causing death of 20,000 people. The waves have also triggered melting down in a nuclear power plant. After Thursday's quake, some high speed trains have suspended operations as precautions.

The memories of earthquake with magnitude of 9 and corresponding deadly Tsunami in March, 2011 still haunt the Japanese. Southwestern part of Japan has witnessed an earthquake with magnitude of 6 on Thursday that toppled down buildings in the epicenter adjacent areas. However, the earthquake hasn't caused any irregularity in the nuclear reactors of the power plants.

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