Japan 7.3 magnitude earthquake triggers Fukushima tsunami warning


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An earthquake off the coast of Japan has triggered a tsunami alert near the Fukushima Prefecture – the site of the 2011 nuclear disaster following a similar trigger event. 

A 7.3 magnitude earthquake struck at 11:36 p.m. local time around 35 miles off the coast of Japan, setting off a series of safety precautions that included cutting power to the region to avoid a similar disaster that followed the 9.0 magnitude quake in 2011. 

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The Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, which operates the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant where the cooling systems failed in the previous disaster, said that workers are checking for possible damage. The Japanese Nuclear Regulation Authority later said that everything at the plant remained normal. 

TEPCO said that power remained unavailable for some 2 million residents. 

Kyodo News reported that many people had gone to hospital with injuries following the quake, which was felt across much of the country. 

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Japan’s Air Self-Defense Force said it dispatched fighter jets from the Hyakuri base in Ibaraki prefecture, just south of Fukushima, for information gathering and damage assessment.

The government established an office at Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s office for crisis management. 

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“Please first take action to save your life,” Kishida tweeted. No casualties have yet been reported. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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