Magnitude 5.8 quake hits off Japan’s Fukushima, no damage or tsunami

An earthquake with an initial magnitude of 5.8 hit northeast of Tokyo on Japan's main island of Honshu on July 20, 2017.
An earthquake with an initial magnitude of 5.8 hit northeast of Tokyo on Japan's main island of Honshu on July 20, 2017.PHOTO: USGS

TOKYO (AFP) - A moderately strong earthquake struck off the coast of Japan’s Fukushima on Thursday (July 20) but no fresh damage to the crippled nuclear power plant there was reported and there was no risk of a tsunami, officials said.  

The 5.8-magnitude quake hit at 9:11 am (0011 GMT) off Fukushima prefecture in the Pacific Ocean with the epicentre located 34 kilometres (21 miles) under the sea, according to the US Geological Survey.  Japan’s meteorological agency said there was no risk of tsunami from the earthquake.  

“We have found no (new) abnormality so far” at the Fukushima Daiichi plant, said a spokesman at Tokyo Electric Power Co., the operator.  

A 9.0-magnitude earthquake in March 2011 triggered a massive and deadly tsunami, which smashed into the power station and sparked the world’s worst atomic accident since Chernobyl in 1986.  

Tokyo Electric is working to clean up and dismantle the reactors in a process that is expected to take at least four decades.

Fukushima police also said there were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.