U.S. stocks looked set to push higher Friday, but were still on track for their worst weekly performance in months, as concerns grew that President Donald Trump's ability to push through his reforms could be waning.
This graphic shows how shaking from the magnitude 7.4 quake rippled across Japan from 5.59am local time:
Map showing local ground acceleration as quake propagated. (via )
Tsunami waves were filmed surging up the Sunaoshi river in Tagajo city after a quake of magnitude 7.4 shook Japan’s eastern coast, prompting evacuation warnings:
Today’s quake was an aftershock of the 2011 magnitude 9 earthquake, the Japan Meteorological Agency has said. But what is the difference? : Seismologists label an earthquake as an aftershock using two guidelines. First, the earthquake must occur within an ‘aftershock zone’, which is usually defined as the region within one fault-rupture length of the mainshock rupture surface or the area defined by seismologists based on previous aftershock activity.
Pointing out that Tuesday’s quake was an aftershock of the 2011 earthquake, the Japan Meteorological Agency also warned that another large quake could be expected within the next few days. People in Japan have been warned to “remain cautious” for the next week.
The Japan Meteorological Agency has said that Tuesday’s earthquake was an aftershock of the enormous, in 2011, which killed more than 15,000 people and sent the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant into meltdown.
New Zealand also experienced an earthquake on Tuesday, just over a week after a 7.8 magnitude quake rocked the South Island. Tuesday’s was a magnitude 5.6 quake, which hit off the coast about 200km (120 miles) northeast of Wellington, the capital, at around 1.20pm local time (00.20 GMT).
There have been no reports of deaths or serious injuries caused by the earthquake, with Japanese media reporting around six people have suffered minor injuries.
All tsunami warnings have now been cancelled for Japan’s Pacific coast. The Japan Meteorological Agency has confirmed: Tsunami advisories have been lifted for the following coastal regions of Japan: Iwate prefecture, Miyagi prefecture, Fukushima prefecture, Ibaraki prefecture. Slight sea-level changes may be observed in coastal regions, but no tsunami damage is expected.
Stock markets have rebounded after an early wobble, Agence France-Presse reports: Asian markets rose Tuesday with energy stocks tracking a surge in oil prices, while Tokyo recovered an early sell-off caused by a huge earthquake off Japan’s northeast coast. The yen strengthened against the dollar after the quake as investors sought out safe haven assets but gave up most of the gains as it emerged there was no major damage.
has downgraded tsunami warnings issued after a 7.4-magnitude earthquake hit off the country’s east coast, as the risk of major damage appeared to pass. The quake, which struck east of Fukushima prefecture at about 6am on Tuesday, prompted urgent warnings for people to leave low-lying areas in Fukushima and Miyagi prefectures as a series of tsunami waves hit the shore.
While immediate fears around the quake and tsunami appear to have calmed, many people in Japan have been shocked by the morning’s events, Agence France-Presse reports: Residents along the coast were badly shaken. “It was huge and lasted so long,” Akemi Anzai, from the city of Minamisoma which lies north of the Fukushima plant, said of the quake.
Shinzo Abe, the Japanese prime minister, has spoken about the earthquake from Buenos Aires, which he is visiting after attending the Apec summit in Peru: A strong earthquake was observed off the coast of Fukushima a short while ago and the tsunami alerts were issued. From my side, to the nation, we asked that proper and accurate information over the tsunami and the evacuation should be issued, and also to grasp and understand the condition of the damage as quickly as possible, and also to take proper emergency measures.
Paul Somerville, chief geoscientist with risk frontiers at Australia’s Macquarie University, says: This earthquake was a normal faulting earthquake that occurred at a shallow depth within the plate that overlies the Tohoku subduction zone, which generated . It indicates east-west extension within the overriding plate, presumably due to the relaxation of horizontal stress that built up before the 2001 event. It occurred about 30km offshore of Fukushima.
Transport has been affected by the quake and subsequent alerts. Sendai port and Suma port have been affected by tsunami waves, although the warning has now been downgraded to an advisory.
Flights to Sendai Airport have been delayed or cancelled following a 7.4 earthquake off the coast of Fukushima.
Associated Press has more on that incident – now resolved – at the Fukushima power plant: A utility official says he believes a cooling water pump that stopped working at a Japanese nuclear power plant after a strong earthquake was shut off automatically by a safety system as the water in the pool shook. The utility says a backup pump was launched to restore cooling water to spent fuel storage pool at the No 3 reactor of the Fukushima Daini plant.
Yoshihide Suga, chief cabinet secretary, also addressed reporters’ questions about the Fukushima power plant. He confirmed the affected reactor had resumed cooling function after a temporary stoppage. Japan’s nuclear power plants have the most strict regulations in the world. We always think of the worst-case scenario … safety is the utmost priority.
Yoshihide Suga, chief cabinet secretary, is speaking at a press conference. He says tsunami warnings have been lifted and downgraded to “advisory”, adding: Residents, please continue to evacuate … and please always listen to the latest information. The government will continue to address how many people have sustained injury.
Tsunami warnings for the Fukushima and Miyagi prefectures have to alerts, a lower level of risk. People in those areas are still advised to avoid the shore.
The epicentre of the earthquake is off the coast of Fukushima. The magnitude 7.4 quake hit at a depth of around 20km, according to latest reports.
The earthquake shook buildings in Tokyo, 240km (150 miles) southwest of the epicentre. Kirsty Brown is an Australian who has been living in Tokyo with her husband and 18-month-old daughter for just seven weeks. The family lives 20 minutes from Shinkjuku, and woke up to the earthquake early this morning: I’d experienced a small quake here on one of our visits several years ago. I thought my husband pushed me out of the bed that time, but this was quite a good deal stronger, and you could feel the whole house wobble. The sensation was similar to your bed suddenly deciding to zig-zag, and it lasted for around 90 seconds. No alarms went off, no alerts came to our phones. My dog and husband rolled over and went back to sleep, but I immediately took to my phone to see if I should be getting us ready for a bigger quake.
Australian on hols in Tokyo, Sumida. Building was shaking and swaying for 5 mins at 6am
Nissan is suspending work at its Fukushima factory, Reuters reports: Nissan Motor Co said it would suspend work at its engine factory in Fukushima at least until a tsunami warning is lifted after a powerful earthquake rocked northern Japan early on Tuesday. A spokesman said there were no injuries or damage at the plant, which was badly damaged in an earthquake and tsunami disaster in March 2011.
Japan’s National Police Agency has said two people were slightly injured during the quake. NHK News that one woman in Yabuki, Fukushima prefecture, was hurt when a cupboard fell over.
Experts in Australia have been assessing today’s earthquake against the devastating 2011 quake and tsunami: Professor James Goff, director of the Australia-Pacific tsunami research centre and natural hazards research laboratory, University of New South Wales, says: In general, with the size of the earthquake experienced, I would not expect any wave to reach the heights of those experienced in 2011, but that does not mean that this event will not be damaging. Tsunamis as small as 90cm can be extremely damaging and so in a sense, we are ‘watching this space’… One concern is not necessarily the size of the earthquake itself but whether or not it might generate submarine landslides that can themselves generate large tsunamis. Today’s event is much smaller than the 2011 catastrophic event. The earthquake maybe an aftershock of the 2011 event. It has affected the same region as the 2011 event. A regional tsunami has been generated – smaller than 2011 but still potentially dangerous. People who live in the region have been advised to evacuate, with authorities taking no chances after the 2011 disaster.
A 1.4m-high tsunami wave has been observed in Sendai, Miyagi prefecture, at 8.03am. It’s the highest so far recorded, although officials stress that second and subsequent waves could be higher, and are still urging people in affected areas to move to higher ground.
There have so far been reports of only minor injuries following the magnitude 7.4 quake, which struck just before 6am local time at a depth of 25km.
Some photos from Kyodo, via Reuters, which are being circulated to news agencies. They show a traffic jam and concerned onlookers.
The Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe, has issued a statement: I have ordered government officials to provide the public with up-to-date and accurate information concerning tsunami evacuation.
Tepco says the Fukushima power plant “remains intact” and safe. The company confirms the reactor number 3 spent fuel pool pump tripped and stopped operating at 6.10am.
The Fukushima Daini reactor 3 cooling system, , has been restored. The operator of the plant said no abnormalities have been observed.
A tsunami warning has now been issued for the Miyagi prefecture, expanding the zone believed to be under threat. Residents are told to evacuate their homes for higher ground.
The (JMA) is holding a news conference. It says the initial quake, recorded at 5.59am, has been revised up to magnitude 7.4.
The tide level is still rising along the coast, with waves as high as 1m now reaching the shore. Residents are being instructed to stay away from the water.
Residents of Japan’s northern Pacific coast are still being told to leave their homes and seek higher ground via televised tsunami advisories:
NHK reports from Fukushima that the Fukushima Daini Reactor 3 cooling system has stopped operating, but “no abnormalities have been observed”. Tepco, the Tokyo Electric Power Company, says cooling water has not leaked and it is preparing to resume operation within one to two hours.
Earthquakes are a familiar experience for Japan, as AFP details: Japan sits at the junction of four tectonic plates and experiences a number of relatively violent quakes every year. A sent a tsunami barrelling into Japan’s northeast coast, leaving more than 18,000 people dead or missing, and sending three reactors into meltdown at the Fukushima nuclear plant.
This is Claire Phipps picking up the live blog coverage. The Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe, is currently in in Buenos Aires, after attending the Apec summit in Peru.
The first tsunami waves to reach the coast of Fukushima, Japan have ranged between 30 and 90cm, much lower than the three metres that was at first predicted. However, Japanese media warn that the tsunami’s waves can increase over time as it continues to strike the coast.
The coolant pool at one of the reactors at Fukushima Daini nuclear power plant, one of two in the region, has been turned off, according to NHK World. There is no danger at this time at the site of the plant, and there is plenty of time before the reactors get dangerously warm.
Today’s tsunami will not be nearly as large as 2011’s disastrous wave, according to Dr. Lucy Jones, a seismologist and scientist emerita at the US Geological Survey.
Tsunami recorded near Fukushima from today's M7.3 quake. Mag=size of fault & this is much smaller than 3.11.11
At Fukushima’s two nuclear power plants, Fukushima Daiichi and Fukushima Daini, external power sources and coolant water have not been affected so far by the earthquake, according to NHK World. “Now staff are watching closely to see any abnormalities.” In this video you can see water rushing out of the harbor at Iwaki City. Water levels typically go down just before a tsunami strikes the shoreline.
Video from NHK live stream shows water rushing out of the harbor at Iwaki City in Japan just now.
Japanese broadcaster NHK world is reporting that waves are beginning to arrive. 60cm tsunami waves have been observed offshore, and the waves are expected to be as high as three metres when they reach the shoreline, NHK reports. You can watch the live broadcast, which is being live-translated into English, .
This is the full text of the tsunami warning issued by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (note that the strength of the earthquake was at first reported to be 7.3 magnitude but was later downgraded to 6.9, according to the US Geological Survey).
warning issued by Pacific Tsunami Warning Center for 7.3 magnitude in Japan today
A tsunami warning has been issued in Fukushima Prefecture after an earthquake struck off the East coast of Japan in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
-- Powerful M7.3 hits coast off at 20:59 GMT. alert on.
All eyes in global financial markets were fixed on stuttering Republican efforts to pass a replacement for Obamacare on Friday, with failure likely to undermine faith in Donald Trump's promise to deliver a "phenomenal" US tax reform.
US stocks mostly rebounded Wednesday ahead of a key congressional vote on health care, but doubts about the prospects for President Donald Trump's broader agenda weighed on European and Asian equities.
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