Japan Quake Strikes Near Nuclear Plant
A 5.6 magnitude earthquake struck northwest Japan in the early morning hours of July 8, 2011 local time. Blue squares sh
An earthquake struck Japan early Friday morrning local time (2:30 pm EDT, Jul 7) off Honshu island in northeast Japan. This is the same area that was devastated by a large earthquake in March that knocked out power to the Fukushima nuclear plant.
The US Geological Survey reports that the earthquake had a magnitude of 5.6 on the Richter scale, where the March quake registered 9.0 on the same scale.
The epicenter of the quake was about 51 miles south-southeast of the nuclear plant and about 120 miles northeast of Tokyo.
No tsunami watch was immediately issued. There were no reports of damage at this time. An earthquake of magnitude 5.6 can cause major damage to poorly constructed buildings near the epicenter. Since Japan has high earthquake-proof building standards, little damage is expected to intact buildings.
The US Geological Survey reports a series of smaller earthquakes in the last week in the same area, which runs along a fault zone.
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