Japan issues tsunami warning after strong quake

Sat, Jul 19, 2008, 01:00

Japan's Meteorological Agency issued a tsunami warning in northeast Japan today after a strong earthquake struck off the east coast of Honshu.

The US Geological Survey said the 7.0 magnitude tremor struck beneath the north Pacific Ocean, 123 kilometres east northeast of Iwaki, Japan at 0239 GMT at a depth of 40 kilometres.

There were no initial reports of damage. Nuclear power facilities in the area were unharmed and were continuing to operate as usual

The quake was epicentred in the same area as a June 14th tremor which killed at least 10 and left as many again missing.

Earthquakes are common in Japan, one of the world's most seismically active areas. The country accounts for about 20 per cent of the world's earthquakes of magnitude 6 or greater.

In October 2004, an earthquake with a magnitude of 6.8 struck the Niigata region in northern Japan, killing 65 people and injuring more than 3,000. It was the deadliest quake since a magnitude 7.3 tremor hit the city of Kobe in 1995, killing more than 6,400.