News / Asia

2 Killed, 100 Injured in Japan Aftershock

A man walks on the debris in Ishinomaki city, Miyagi prefecture after a powerful 7.1 aftershock rocked that area of Japan, April 8, 2011
A man walks on the debris in Ishinomaki city, Miyagi prefecture after a powerful 7.1 aftershock rocked that area of Japan, April 8, 2011

Officials say a powerful aftershock that rattled Japan late Thursday night killed at least two people and injured around 100.

The 7.1-magnitude quake knocked out several power plants and triggered a tsunami alert that was later lifted.

The Tokyo Electric Power Company says there is no sign the earthquake caused new problems at the damaged Fukushima nuclear plant.  Workers at the station took shelter immediately after the aftershock, which hit just after 11:30 p.m.

An official from Japan's Nuclear Industrial and Safety Agency says emergency nitrogen and water injections into the dangerously overheated nuclear reactors at Fukushima continued remotely while the workers evacuated.  

Workers at the plant have been struggling for three weeks to bring the radiation-leaking nuclear power plant under control after its cooling systems were knocked out on March 11.

Power lines to three other nuclear plants were affected by the earthquake, but officials say at least one emergency source of power remained operational at all those plants.

The U.S. Geological Survey said Thursday's aftershock registered a magnitude of 7.1 with an epicenter 40 kilometers under the seabed.  Earlier estimates had described the tremor as 7.4 magnitude.  A VOA reporter in the capital said the tremor had been "strongly felt" in Tokyo.

There were widespread power outages across the northeast. An official with Japan's meteorological agency warned there may be additional "intense" aftershocks, and said there was a high risk of houses collapsing and mudslides.

Japan is still reeling from a massive 9.0 earthquake and massive tsunami that devastated large areas of the northeast on March 11.

Japanese officials earlier Thursday had said that efforts to pump nitrogen into the containment vessel of the Fukushima damaged nuclear reactor appeared to be succeeding, easing fears that a hydrogen build-up in the vessel could cause a dangerous explosion.  They said the operation could last for several days and may be repeated at the number two and number three reactors.

Technicians with the Tokyo Electric Power Company also are pumping the last of 11,500 tons of contaminated water into the ocean in order to make room in a storage area for water from the basements of the damaged reactors that is 200,000 times more radioactive.

The nuclear accident, caused when the March 11 earthquake and tsunami knocked out cooling systems at the plant's six reactors, is considered the second worst in history.

Public anxiety over the nuclear situation has been high in several countries, with reports of panic purchases of iodine tablets in the western United States and of salt in China and South Korea.  In South Korea Thursday, some schools were closed because of fears that a passing rainfall may be radioactive.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.

You May Like

Turkey: No Ransom Paid for Release of Hostages Held by IS Militants

President Erdogan hails release of hostages as diplomatic success but declines to be drawn on whether their release freed Ankara's hand to take more active stance against insurgents More

Audio Sierra Leone Ends Ebola Lockdown

Health ministry says it has reached 75 percent of its target of visiting 1.5 million homes to locate infected, educate population about virus More

US Pivot to Asia Demands Delicate Balancing Act

As tumult in Middle East distracts Obama administration, efforts to shift American focus eastward appear threatened More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Towni
X
Deborah Block
September 21, 2014 2:12 PM
A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Town

A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Difficult Tactical Battle Ahead Against IS Militants in Syria

The U.S. president has ordered the military to intensify its fight against the Islamic State, including in Syria. But how does the military conduct air strikes in a country that is not a U.S. ally? VOA correspondent Carla Babb reports from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks

Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports that as the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity.
Video

Video Alibaba Shares Soar in First Day of Trading

China's biggest online retailer hit the market Friday -- with its share price soaring on the New York Stock Exchange. The shares were priced at $68, but trading stalled at the opening, as sellers held onto their shares, waiting for buyers to bid up the price. More on the world's biggest initial public offering from VOA’s Bernard Shusman in New York.
Video

Video Obama Goes to UN With Islamic State, Ebola on Agenda

President Obama goes to the United Nations General Assembly to rally nations to support a coalition against Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria. He also will look for nations to back his plan to fight the Ebola virus in West Africa. As VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports, Obama’s efforts reflect new moves by the U.S. administration to take a leading role in addressing world crises.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Militant Assault in Syria Displaces Thousands of Kurds

A major assault by Islamic State militants on Kurds in Syria has sent a wave of new refugees to the Turkish border, where they were stopped by Turkish border security. Turkey is already hosting about 700,000 Syrian refugees who fled the civil war between the government and the opposition. But the government in Ankara has a history of strained relations with Turkey's Kurdish minority. Zlatica Hoke reports Turkey is asking for international help.
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid