A New Japan

Strong Earthquake Rocks Japan

A powerful 7.4 magnitude aftershock in Miyagi Prefecture is a reminder of the challenges Japan faces in reconstruction.

An unwelcome reminder of the ongoing challenges facing northeastern Japan has just come with another powerful aftershock, which was also felt here in Tokyo.

According to the Japan Meteorological Agency, the quake, which struck at 11.32 pm, had a magnitude of 7.4 (and measured an upper 6 on the Japanese Seismic Intensity Scale). It was centred in Miyagi Prefecture, which was the worst-hit region in the magnitude 9.0 Tohoku quake that struck last month. A tsunami warning has reportedly been issued.

Although not as powerful as the March 11 temblor, buildings here in Tokyo continued swaying for quite some time after the initial shaking had subsided, making it reminiscent of that earlier quake, when even outside the ground could be felt swaying under foot.

We'll keep you posted if there are any reports of significant damage, although it's far too early to know that. Stll, it's yet another test for a people that have shown remarkable courage until now.

Update: The tsunami warning has been lifted and there are no reports of major damage. TEPCO, which operates the stricken Daiichi nuclear power plant in Fukushima, added that there was no further damage to the reactors, although workers were temporarily evacuated.