Powerful Earthquake Strikes Japan Off Fukushima, Tsunami Warning Issued - Live Feed

Updatge 4: According to finance minister Taro Aso there has been no major damage from the quake, while Toyota informs that it plants in northeast Japan are operating normally after the quake

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Update 3:  According to NHK, a tsunami of 1.4 meters has been recorded in Sendai Port, Miyagi.  Additional warnings were issued earlier for the area as tidal levels are rising.

Meanwhile, TEPCO is reporting that the water cooling system in Reactor 3 has been restarted after being down for 90 minutes.  No abnormalities have been detected after the restart.

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Update 2: According to TEPCO, there are 2,544 fuel rods in Fukushima Daini Reactor 3, "but no "immediate" danger because they are in a pool of water."

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Update: according to NHK, the water cooling system at Reactor #3 of the Fukushima Daiini nuclear plant has stopped following the earthquake, and they are inspecting.

 

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A powerful earthquake, with a preliminary magnitude of M7.3 on the Richter scale, since reduced to M6.9  by the USGS, struck Japan 156 miles northeast of Tokyo at 5:59am local time.

The epicenter of the earthquake, which was felt in Tokyo, was off the coast of Fukushima prefecture at a depth of about 10 km, Japan's Meteorological Agency said, the same Fukushima that was site of the 2011 natural disaster and tsunami that resulted in the worst nuclear power plant disaster since Chernobyl.


There were no immediate reports of damage or injury, Reuters notes. Tokyo Electric Power Co was checking its nuclear plants in Fukushima for damage, public broadcaster NHK said.  Tohoku Electric Power Co said there was no damage to its Onagawa nuclear plant.

Television footage showed ships moving out to sea from Fukushima harbors, as the meteorological agency warned of a tsunami of 3 meters (10 feet) for Fukushima, where Tepco's Daiichi nuclear plant was devastated in a March 2011 quake and tsunami.

The March 11, 2011, quake was magnitude 9, the strongest quake in Japan on record. The massive tsunami it triggered caused world's worst nuclear crisis since Chernobyl a quarter of a century earlier. The U.S. Geological Survey initially put Tuesday's quake at a magnitude of 7.3 but down graded it to 6.9.

All nuclear plants on the coast threatened by the tsunami are shutdown in the wake of the Fukushima disaster. Only two reactors are operating in Japan, both in the southwest of the country. Even when in shutdown nuclear plants need cooling systems operating to keep spent fuel cool.

NHK also adds that a tsunami, as high as 3 meters, has been detected at Fukushima

  • TSUNAMI DETECTED AT IWAKI IN JAPAN’S FUKUSHIMA, NHK SAYS
  • TSUNAMI IMMINENT AS SEEN OFF FUKUSHIMA'S IWAKI CITY, NHK SAYS

NHK also adds that TEPCO has advised that it is checking for abnormalities at nuclear plant in Fukushima; the plant has stopped. It then added the following:

  • NO IRREGULARITIES AT FUKUSHIMA DAIICHI NUCLEAR PLANT AFTER JAPAN QUAKE-KYODO

Japanese TV at this moment:

The details:

An evacuation has been ordered near Fukushima:

The quake headlines have sparked notable selling in USDJPY.

 

A live cam from the Fukushima NPP can be seen below:

Developing.

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