A strong magnitude 7.2 earthquake struck off the coast of northeastern Japan at a depth of 60 km on Saturday evening just after 6 p.m.
In Miyagi Prefecture, the quake measured up to a strong 5 on the Japanese seismic intensity scale to 7.
Tsunami waves of up to 1 meter may have reached the Miyagi Prefecture coast shortly after 6:30 p.m., according to NHK.
Two hundred homes in Kurihara, Miyagi Prefecture were without power, the public broadcaster said. The quake caused the Tohoku Shinkansen to suspend services.
The central government has set up a crisis management center at the Prime Minister’s Office, and is working with related ministries, agencies and local governments to collect information on any damage caused by the quake, NHK said. In Ofunato, Iwate Prefecture, where the quake registered a lower 5, the city has opened evacuation centers at 69 locations.
Municipal fire officials in Miyagi reported no damage from the quake as of 6:30 p.m., but were continuing to gather information, NHK said.
“Suddenly, the large tremor continued for about 20 seconds,” the public broadcaster quoted a disaster official in Iwanuma, Miyagi Prefecture, as saying. “The shaking caused things on a desk to move, but they didn’t fall, and I felt the shaking was smaller than last month’s earthquake.”
The quake comes a little over a month after a 7.3 temblor struck off neighboring Fukushima Prefecture. The Feb. 14 quake caused widespread power outages and left dozens injured.
It also comes nine days after the region marked the 10th anniversary of the magnitude 9.0 Great East Japan Earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster that devastated the region and killed over 15,000 people.