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木曜日, 5月 08, 0020

Early warning system fails again as M6.7 quake hits Tokyo, Ibaraki, Saitama and Chiba

Read the news from japantoday.com .. lucky no massive damage

TOKYO —
An earthquake with a magnitude of 7.0 hit extensive areas centering on the Kanto region including Tokyo in the early hours of Thursday injuring six people, with an early warning failing to be issued in time again. The six people in Tokyo, Ibaraki, Saitama and Chiba prefectures sustained minor injuries due to the 1:45 a.m. quake, according to the government’s Fire and Disaster Management Agency.

The quake measured lower 5 on the Japanese seismic intensity scale of 7 in Mito, Ibaraki Prefecture, and Motegi, Tochigi Prefecture, the Japan Mete, the Japan Meteorological Agency said. No tsunamis were reported.

The meteorological agency’s early warning system for major quakes made an announcement 58 seconds after preliminary tremors were detected.

When an earthquake jolted Miyako Island, Okinawa Prefecture, and its vicinity on April 28, the agency announced a quake intensity warning for the first time since its introduction last October but the warning was not issued before the arrival of the quake’s principal motion.

Takashi Yokota, the head of the agency’s Earthquake and Tsunami Observation Division, said the agency will study the feasibility of improving the methods for calculating magnitude because its initial underestimation of the 1:45 a.m. quake was behind the delay in Thursday’s issuance of an early warning.

The early warning system is designed to predict how strong the intensity of a quake may grow—as soon as possible before the quake actually shakes a region—and it is supposed to be activated when intensity is expected to be at a level of lower 5 or above.

Weaker temblors were felt in extensive areas including Tokyo, where the quake registered 3 on the Japanese scale.

The focus of the quake was around 51 kilometers below the surface of the sea in the Pacific off the coast of Ibaraki Prefecture.

The meteorological agency initially estimated the quake’s magnitude at 6.7 and the depth of the focus at 40 kilometers but later revised those figures.

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