Japan's southern region struck by magnitude-6.1 earthquake

  • 18/06/2018
Several deaths have been reported by local Japanese media.
Several deaths have been reported by local Japanese media. Photo credit: Twitter / @chyadosensei

Japan has been struck by a magnitude-6.1 earthquake, leaving several people dead.

Up to 17 people are reported to have been injured in the earthquake, according to Japan's Fire and Disaster Management Agency, and "several deaths" have been reported by NHK and TV Asahi. 

The earthquake shook Japan's southern city of Osaka, and was also said to have been felt in Kyoto, Shiga and Nara. 

Japanese Self-Defence Force fighter jets have been deployed to the area to monitor the situation, Express says.

Trains and factories have been halted across the region, Bloomberg reports, after the earthquake struck at 7:58am (local time). The quake was relatively shallow at 13 kilometres, and took place inland, easing fears of a tsunami. 

Theme Park Review tweeted its amazement at trains being up and running at one station in Osaka just shortly after the earthquake. 

"There was a 5.9 earthquake almost right under us in Osaka and 20 minutes later they have already finished their safety check and trains are already running again!"

Up to 17,000 homes were without power as of 9:50am, according to regional utility Kansai Electric Power Company - but luckily, there have been no reports of abnormalities at its nuclear plant in the region. 

The area appears to have been spared major infrastructure damage, but there are warnings that aftershocks could strike, the Japan Meteorology Agency said. 

A massive magnitude-9.0 quake and tsunami hit northern Japan in 2011.

In 2016, a 7.3-magnitude tremor struck Japan's Kumamoto province on the island of Kyushu. It was the second major quake to hit the area in just over 24 hours. The first quake killed nine people, and the second at least 32. 

The area is at risk of earthquakes because it is situated close to a number of major fault lines.