View Full Version : 6- earthquake rocks Eastern Hokkaido

Sep 26, 2003, 11:53
A strong earthquake has woken up Hokkaido dwellers around 4am this morning. The tremor had a magnitude 8 at its epicenter off the Eastern coast of Hokkaido, but n more than 6- on the island itself. There seems to be no victims, though hundreds of people were taken into hospital.
The more disastrous images came from an oil refinery that took fire as a consequence.

This is the 3rd earthquake reaching 6- in Northern Japan in the last 4 months, which at closer analysis actualy seem to happen exactly every 60 days (29/05 and 27/07 near Sendai and today 26/09).

BBC News : Strong quake hits northern Japan (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/in_depth/3141074.stm)


A strong earthquake has struck the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido injuring over 100 people.
The quake, which hit at about 0450 local time on Friday (1950GMT Thursday), has reportedly derailed a train and set off a fire at an oil refinery

Reuters : Huge quakes hit Japan's Hokkaido (http://uk.news.yahoo.com/030926/325/e9h56.html)

TOKYO (Reuters) - A series of powerful earthquakes have shaken the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido, injuring more than 230 people, causing widespread damage and blackouts and prompting officials to issue tidal wave warnings.

Japan's Meteorological Agency measured the initial quake at 8.0 on the Richter scale -- strong enough to cause major damage -- and warned there could be aftershocks for up to 10 days.

Sep 29, 2003, 04:30
It was the strongest earthquake we've had so far this year (and the strongest in Hokkaido for a long long time). My apartment has never shaken like this before. We sat on the floor because it was too difficult to stand. We had another one about two hours after the first, at a similar intensity. One of my fish died when it was thrown clear out of its tank. The first quake was eventually upgraded to 8.2. (To put this in perspective, the Great Hanshin Earthquake of 1995 which killed nearly 6,000 people, was measured at 7.2). If the epicenter hadn't been so deep (60km) this could have been a far bigger story.

Another factor which may have helped to keep the casualty rate so low was the location. Here in Hokkaido, most buildings are made of much sturdier construction than those further south. Many of the houses that collapsed in the Great Hanshin Earthquake were of old fashioned wooden construction. This is not practical in Hokkaido due to the extreme conditions experienced during the winter months - houses here are built to keep the chills out, as well as survive earthquakes!

Fortunately the tsunami which were predicted didn't materialise - this could also be due to the depth of the epicenter.

Today we had 3 more noticeable aftershocks. The strongest was this morning - about a 5.2 (a mild rocking sensation). Then there were two more this afternoon.