Strong quake rocks remote islands of Kagoshima pref.

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Akusekijima island in Kagoshima Prefecture

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — A strong earthquake rocked remote islands of Kagoshima Prefecture, southwestern Japan, on Thursday morning.

The quake occurred around 11:05 a.m. , measuring upper 5, the fourth-highest level on the Japanese seismic intensity scale, on Akusekijima, one of the Tokara islands in the village of Toshima.

The undersea quake with an estimated magnitude of 6.1 is believed to have occurred at a depth of 14 kilometers near the Tokara chain, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency. No tsunami from the temblor was confirmed.

Noting that seismic activity had continued in the region in the past, Shinya Tsukada, director of the agency’s Earthquake and Tsunami Observation Division, warned residents to remain alert for earthquakes with intensity levels of up to around upper 5 for the time being.

Seismic activity began increasing near the Tokara chain around noon Saturday. A total of 232 quakes measuring 1 to 4 on the Japanese scale had occurred by noon Thursday. According to the Toshima village office, all of Akusekijima’s 76 residents have been confirmed safe with nobody injured.

Kaori Tsuhako, head of the island’s post office, said that the upper 5 quake on Thursday morning shook the ground up and down and from side to side for about 20 seconds. “Three bottles of disinfectant fell from a shelf, but it caused no injuries,” Tsuhako said.