Strong earthquake jolts Japan, at least 109 injured

July 24th, 2008 - 9:26 am ICT by IANS  

Tokyo, July 24 (DPA) At least 109 people were injured in a 6.8-magnitude earthquake that hit northern Japan shortly after midnight Wednesday, media reports said Thursday. The government sent a research team Thursday morning to the quake-hit region to inspect the damages.

About 15 of those injured were in serious condition, while others sustained minor injuries, the police said.

Landslides were reported in some mountainous areas, windows shattered and objects fell as the seismic wave rattled buildings across northern Japan. Water pipes burst and more than 500 households were left without water in some regions.

East Japan Railway Co suspended train services in the northern region Thursday morning for safety checks.

No damage was reported to nuclear power plants in Miyagi and Fukushima provinces, or at nuclear fuel recycling facilities in Aomori city.

The government set up a task force at the prime minister’s office to deal with the quake’s aftermath.

The Japan Meteorological Agency said the earthquake’s epicentre was 108 km under the sea basin off the northeastern coast of Iwate province.

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