5.6-Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Northern Japan; No Tsunami Warning Issued

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By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | July 9, 2014 3:27 PM EST

As Japan's southern islands battle it out with typhoon Neoguri on Tuesday, the country's northern islands have been stricken with a 5.6-magnitude earthquake on the same day. The whiplash of the double incidents is now creating fear among the residents of Japan.

REUTERS/Jorge Dan Lopez
Children stand among merchandise from an earthquake-damaged store in San Pedro, in the San Marcos region in northwest Guatemala, July 8, 2014. A strong earthquake shook the border between Guatemala and Mexico on Monday, killing at least three people, including a newborn boy, damaging dozens of buildings and triggering landslides. Much of the damage from the 6.9-magnitude quake was reported in the Guatemalan border region of San Marcos, where it downed power lines, cracked buildings and triggered landslides that blocked roads. REUTERS/Jorge Dan Lopez (GUATEMALA - Tags: DISASTER ENVIRONMENT)

At around 6:05 p.m., local time Tuesday, a 5.6-magnitude quake hit the southern part of Japan's northernmost prefecture of Hokkaido, Japan's broadcaster NHK reported.

The quake's strength would trigger a tsunami, the NHK reported, but would not cause substantial damage. As of press time, there are no reports yet of damage or injuries.

The US Geological Survey said the temblor's epicentre was located inland 37km deep of the northernmost Hokkaido, close to the region's capital city Sapporo.

The Japan Meteorological Agency registered the quake's strength slightly higher at 5.8 magnitude. It noted that despite the readings, there was no risk of a tsunami.

The island's Hokkaido Electric Power Co. said no abnormalities were found at its Tomari nuclear power plant, which remains offline, in the village of Tomari, according to Kyodo.

No blackouts were likewise experienced after the quake struck, the utility said.

Operations of Hokkaido Railway Co had returned to normal. It earlier had to suspend operations on its Muroran Line as precautionary measure, although there were no reports of derailments.

"People are wondering about the disaster happening, earthquake happening, typhoon," Takeshi Takazawa of portal Asian Access said.

Read: Typhoon Neoguri: 2 Dead, Forces Flights Cancellation, Cuts Electricity and Water Supplies (PHOTOS)

Takazawa said the double whammy typhoon and earthquake on Tuesday reignited fears among the people of Japan. "People are wondering, 'What's happening to us? Things are not normal. We cannot bear any more natural disasters.' That's the concern people have."

A strong 6.0-magnitude earthquake shook buildings in May in the Japanese capital Tokyo. At least 17 people were injured. 

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(Photo: REUTERS/Jorge Dan Lopez / )
Children stand among merchandise from an earthquake-damaged store in San Pedro, in the San Marcos region in northwest Guatemala, July 8, 2014. A strong earthquake shook the border between Guatemala and Mexico on Monday, killing at least three people, including a newborn boy, damaging dozens of buildings and triggering landslides. Much of the damage from the 6.9-magnitude quake was reported in the Guatemalan border region of San Marcos, where it downed power lines, cracked buildings and triggered landslides that blocked roads. REUTERS/Jorge Dan Lopez (GUATEMALA - Tags: DISASTER ENVIRONMENT)
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