At 1:25am Kumamoto-shi Japan was hit with a 7.1M Earthquake. It was the second quake to hit Japan in as many days. Early reports indicate that buildings shook, and subway service were interrupted.
Eye witness accounts published on the earthquake-report.com indicate that some residents of the capital city of Kumamoto Prefecture woke up to a sudden and violent vibrating movement as buildings felt like they were being struck repeatedly. One resident recounted feeling minor rumbling for a while, but added that they themselves may have simply been shaking from fear.
Early Tsunami Warnings have been lifted, but many residents could still be seen moving to higher ground, according to local news reports.
Presently, no reports of major damage or injuries have been published.
The BBC is reporting Japan is one of the most seismically active areas on Earth, accounting for about 20 percent of global quakes of magnitude 6.0 or greater. Seismometers are recording some kind of event every five minutes, on average.
It is through bitter experience that Japan has learnt the strategies to mitigate damage, injury and death. Not only does it implement some the best building construction practices, but it has also established an early warning network.
This system relies on the lightning analysis of the developing quake, establishing its location and strength. Alerts are then broadcast that can give people more distant from the epicentre vital seconds’ notice.
Just 10 seconds is more than sufficient to drop and get under a sturdy table, or open the doors of a fire station.
The prospect of buildings already damaged in Thursday’s quake toppling over in this latest tremor will be a concern.
D. Chandler Contributed to this report
Sources: BBC News