Several people were injured as a 5.2 magnitude earthquake hit Japan, including Chiba Prefecture and downtown Tokyo, according to Japanese media.
The earthquake struck at 4:16am and was registered as an upper 5 on the Japanese earthquake intensity scale of 7 in Kisarazu and lower 5 in Kimitsu, both in Chiba Prefecture, and 4 in areas including Tokyo’s Chiyoda and Shinagawa wards, the Japanese Meteorological Agency reported. The agency also noted that there were no warnings regarding tsunamis issued by the authorities.
Upper 5 Scale Earthquake Hits Chiba Prefecture
The upper 5 scale definition implies a situation in which people find it difficult to walk. Chiba Prefecture had not experienced an upper 5 earthquake since 2012, said the agency, warning that a similar scale earthquake could occur for about a week. The quake measured 4 in Mihama Ward in the city of Chiba and some wards in Yokohama and Kawasaki.
Disruptions in Railway Services and Elevator Operations
Two women were slightly injured in Chiba Prefecture, with two others hurt in Kanagawa Prefecture, including a man who suffered injuries from a falling ceiling light while sleeping. No casualties were reported from Tokyo, according to The Japan Times. The earthquake also caused disruptions in railway services that run through Chiba Prefecture, including Uchibo and Sotobo lines, which were canceled or delayed. In addition, dozens of elevators, mostly in high-rise condominium buildings in Tokyo, as well as Chiba and Kanagawa prefectures, stopped automatically due to the earthquake. However, according to the elevator manufacturing and maintenance company Elevator Systems, nobody was reported to be trapped inside.
Governor Calls for Preparedness for Aftershocks
The quake originated in southern Chiba Prefecture at a depth of around 40 kilometres. The agency initially reported a magnitude of 5.4 but later revised it to 5.2. While there were no serious injuries in the aftermath of the quake, residents were terrified after the jolt. Chiba Governor Toshihito Kumagai instructed officials to prepare for large aftershocks for the time being, saying, “We must be fully ready to respond.”