Published: Mon, June 18, 2018
Worldwide | By Victor Meyer

Indonesia opens hotline in anticipation of another quake in Osaka

Indonesia opens hotline in anticipation of another quake in Osaka

In Osaka Prefecture, about 170,000 homes and buildings were without power as of 8:30 a.m.

Three people were confirmed dead and nearly 100 injured after a strong quake hit Osaka on Monday morning, rattling one of Japan's industrial heartlands and halting trains and factories across the region.

According to the Japan Meteorological Agency, the quake's epicenter was in northern Osaka Prefecture and occurred at a depth of about 13 kilometers.

There were no immediate reports of major damage and no tsunami warning was issued after the powerful quake, which stranded commuters and left tens of thousands without power.

The JMA also said it is unlikely that another fault zone responsible for the 1995 Great Hanshin Earthquake that leveled the port city of Kobe had any influence on the June 18 quake based on the distance between the two points.

The natural disaster reminded many in Japan of the magnitude 7.3 Hanshin-Kobe quake in 1995 that killed more than 6,000 in the region.

Disaster Management Minister Hachiro Okonogi says there are reports of people being buried under collapsed buildings.

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Local broadcaster NHK reported a third death and said that 200 people had been hurt. Osaka-based Panasonic said it was halting production at three of its plants.

The tremor caused power outages in some areas, suspending train operations during the morning commuting hours. A magnitude 4.6 quake hit southern Gunma, north of Tokyo, on Sunday, and a magnitude 4.5 temblor struck Chiba, near Tokyo, on Saturday.

Kepco said its Fukui nuclear plants were operating normally.

In a quake with an intensity of lower 6, it is hard to remain standing and unsecured furniture may move or topple over, according to the agency.

"We were sleeping and it woke us up abruptly", said Kate Kilpatrick, 19, an American who was staying in a hotel in Osaka when the quake hit.

No irregularities were detected at the Mihama, Takahama and Ohi nuclear plants to the north of Osaka, Kansai Electric Power said.

The magnitude 6.1 quake struck the city of Osaka and the surrounding area Monday about 8 a.m. In 1995, a magnitude 6.9 quake killed more than 6000 people when it struck in neighbouring Kobe.

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