A massive earthquake rocked northern Japan on Wednesday evening, triggering a tsunami advisory.
Over 2 million homes in the Tokyo area went dark after a 7.3 magnitude quake struck off the coast of Fukushima – same area that was devastated by a disastrous 9.0 earthquake and tsunami 11 years ago that also triggered Fukushima nuclear powerplant meltdowns, spewing massive radiation that still makes some parts of the region uninhabitable.
The Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, which operates the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant where the cooling systems failed after the 2011 disaster, said workers found no abnormalities at the site, which was in the process of being decommissioned.
Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority said a fire alarm went off at the turbine building of No. 5 reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi but there was no actual fire. Water pumps for the spent fuel cooling pool at two of the four reactors at Fukushima Daini briefly stopped, but later resumed operation. Fukushima Daini is also set for decommissioning.
The Japan Meteorological Agency said the quake hit at 11:36 p.m. at a depth of 36 miles below the sea.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said there was no longer a tsunami threat though the Japan Meteorological Agency kept its low-risk advisory in place.
NHK national television said tsunami waves of 8 inches already reached shore in Ishinomaki, about 242 miles northeast of Tokyo.