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Friday, September 29, 2023

Quake-hit central Japan braces for more aftershocks, rain


Japan’s central prefecture of Ishikawa on Saturday remained on high alert for aftershocks and rain after a 6.5-magnitude earthquake struck the area the previous day, leaving one dead and 22 others injured.

The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) has warned strong aftershocks could occur in the span of around a week following the initial temblor on Friday afternoon, which registered upper 6 on the Japanese seismic intensity scale of 7 in the city of Suzu on the tip of the Noto Peninsula.

A 65-year-old man died in Suzu in Friday’s quake after falling from a ladder and the city said 22 others had been injured.

More than 50 aftershocks have already been recorded in the area by 8 a.m. local time, including a 5.8-magnitude quake on Friday evening, the JMA said, warning that heavy rain could trigger landslides in areas where the ground has been loosened by the quakes.

The weather agency said the prefecture could see rainfall of up to 30 millimeters per hour from Saturday evening to early Sunday, with up to 120 mm forecast for the Noto area over the 24 hours through 6 a.m. of Sunday.

Local authorities have started to assess damage caused by the quakes after receiving reports of collapsed buildings.

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