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 Japan quake infographic
Graphic shows location of earthquake.


Massive earthquake slams Japan

By Duncan Mil

January 1, 2024 - A powerful earthquake struck central Japan’s west coast on Monday, triggering evacuations, knocking out power to thousands of homes and disrupting flights and rail services.

On Monday afternoon, the powerful 7.5-magnitude earthquake rocked western Japan’s coastal prefectures of Ishikawa, Niigata, and Toyama, triggering tsunami alerts and several strong aftershocks.

The quake struck about 42km (26 miles) northeast of Anamizu in Ishikawa prefecture. The area sits above the western-moving Eurasian and eastward-moving North American tectonic plates.

It marked the first time Japan has issued a major tsunami warning since 2011, when a 9.0-magnitude quake struck Tohoku, causing catastrophic damage from deadly tsunami waves.

“Residents need to stay on alert for further possible quakes and I urge people in areas where tsunamis are expected to evacuate as soon as possible,” Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said in comments to the media shortly after the quake struck.

The quake also jolted buildings in Tokyo, some 500km (310 miles) from Ishikawa on the opposite coast.

PUBLISHED: 01/01/2024; STORY: Graphic News