Strong quake strikes Japanese city

Strong quake strikes Japanese city

Strong quake strikes Japanese city

A strong natural disaster with a magnitude of 6.1 hit Osaka and other parts of western Japan on Monday morning, leaving at least three people dead and more than 200 injured, disrupting rush-hour traffic and cutting off power, water and gas in the area.

Local police said the child died in the city of Takatsuki, north of Osaka city, with media reporting she was trapped when a wall collapsed on her at school.

The quake, causing scattered damage including broken glass and partial building collapses, struck around 8 a.m. about 6 miles underground with a magnitude of 6.1, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

The weather agency warned that a strong quake with a similar size could jolt the Osaka region within a week, but dismissed concerns that Monday's temblor could trigger a megaquake that is projected to occur in the future off western Japan with massive tsunami.

It disrupted the morning commute for thousands of people, including those outside the city, with bullet train and subway services suspended while they were checked for damage. There was no tsunami risk. Passengers were seen exiting trains on the tracks between stations.

Live footage showed burst water mains and a house on fire after the quake hit Osaka, which will host next year's Group of 20 summit, just before 8 commuters were heading to work.

Japan's JXTG Nippon Oil & Energy Corp has shut all its refining units at the 115,000 barrels per day Osaka refinery after the quake, with product shipments halted.

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Damage inside a home in Osaka, Japan, after the natural disaster struck. The other two fatalities were both men in their 80s.

The quake set off building fires, toppled concrete walls and cracked roads and water pipes. Municipal authorities have confirmed three deaths in Osaka and a nearby city, a 9-year-old girl and two men in their 80s. Books were thrown off the shelves at a store.

Many homes and buildings, including a major hospital, were temporarily without power, though electricity was restored at most places by midafternoon. At a shrine in Kyoto, stone lanterns broke and collapsed to the ground. A strong quake shook the city, causing scattered damage including broken glass and partial building collapses.

About 850 people took shelter at community centers, school gymnasiums and other public facilities in Osaka.

The Osaka quake on Monday followed two tremors over the weekend.

A 30-year-old lawyer Jun Kawasaki said the quake reminded him of the Kobe quake 23 years ago, and started packing up immediately to run away. He said his wife ducked under a table and elevators in his office building were out of operation.

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