Powerful quake shakes Osaka, knocks out power, trains:The Asahi Shimbun

18 June, 2018, 10:29 | Author: Sheila Harris

At least three people have died and more than 40 others were injured after a powerful natural disaster shook the Japanese coastal city of Osaka during the morning rush hour on Monday.

Top government spokesman Yoshihide Suga confirmed the deaths of a child and a man, and said a third person was also feared dead in the quake.

Japan Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told reporters at a hastily convened press conference that there were no immediate reports of heavy damage, and that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had ordered relevant ministries to gather information on the natural disaster.

Public broadcaster NHK said an 80-year-old man had been killed, also by a collapsing wall. "Almost all of the dishes fell and shattered on the floor", said Kaori Iwakiri, a 50-year-old nurse in Moriguchi, just north of Osaka city.

A powerful natural disaster struck Osaka and neighboring prefectures on June 18, knocking out power in a widespread area and disrupting Shinkansen and local train services.

Japanese authorities don't confirm death until after an examination at a hospital.

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Many commuters in the morning rush hour were left stranded at stations and on streets as the quake disrupted operations of shinkansen bullet train and other railways in western and central Japan.

It set off multiple building fires and toppled walls.

Electric boards of train guide tilt greatly due to an quake registering a weak 6 on the Japanese seismic scale at Ibaraki-shi Station in Ibaraki City, the north side of Osaka Prefecture on June 18, 2018. In 2016, there was a 6.2 tremor two days before a 7 magnitude quake which caused injuries and damage in southern Kumamoto. No major damage caused by the quake was reported. Centered inland from the port city, the quake did not cause a tsunami. Passengers were seen exiting trains on the tracks between stations. Vehicle makers Honda, Mitsubishi, Toyota and Daihatsu all stopped production at plants in the region.

The prime minister, Shinzo Abe, said the government was assessing the damage and that its priority was to rescue anyone trapped inside buildings.

The quake, which hit just before 8am (7am Singapore time), killed three people, including a nine-year-old girl.

Market reaction to the event was largely muted, with shares in some companies located in the region including Osaka Gas dropping, while Sumitomo Osaka Cement Co. and electrical contractor Kinden Corp. gained as the extent of damage from the quake remained unclear.

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