A tsunami warning was issued for Fukushima and Miyagi prefectures in eastern Japan following the earthquake, whose initial epicenter was at a depth of 60 kilometers (37 miles), according to the Japan Meteorological Agency.
The warning warns of tsunami heights of up to one meter above normal tidal levels, with the initial waves reaching shore around midnight local time (11 a.m. ET).
The quake was felt in Miyagi and the capital, Tokyo, with footage showing lights and buildings shaking. Tokyo Electric Power Co. said on its website that the quake cut power to more than two million households in Tokyo and neighboring prefectures.
According to the US Pacific Tsunami Warning Center, a tsunami is not expected at the Pacific Basin level at this time.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno said at a press conference that one of the nuclear power plants in Fukushima is being examined, while the second is not affected.
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s office wrote on Twitter that the Japanese government said the agencies would “work together to make every effort to respond” in the wake of the quake.
Wednesday’s quake was centered 55 miles (89 kilometers) from the devastating 2011 earthquake that triggered a tsunami with 30-foot waves that destroyed several nuclear reactors in the area. More than 22,000 were killed or missing in that disaster. The initial earthquake, tsunami, and post-disaster health conditions caused deaths.
The 2011 Japan earthquake had a magnitude of 9.1, about 63 times stronger, and released about 500 times more energy than Wednesday’s earthquake.