Strong Quake Hits Ishikawa Pref. in Central Japan


Tokyo, March 13 (Jiji Press)--A powerful earthquake with an estimated magnitude of 5.5 jolted Ishikawa Prefecture in central Japan early Friday, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

The temblor occurred around 2:18 a.m. (5:18 p.m. Thursday GMT), measuring upper 5, the fourth highest on the 10-notch Japanese seismic intensity scale, in the city of Wajima and lower 5 in the neighboring town of Anamizu. Both are in the Noto Peninsula, part of the prefecture facing the Sea of Japan.

The focus of the quake is about 12 kilometers underground in the peninsula, the agency said. The quake did not cause tsunami.

The quake happened near the focus of a 6.9-magnitude temblor that measured up to upper 6 on March 25, 2007.

Regarding whether Friday's quake was an aftershock of the 2007 temblor, Masaki Nakamura, director of the agency's Earthquake and Tsunami Observation Division, told a press conference that he will wait for an assessment by the government's Earthquake Research Committee.

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