Tsunami Waves Minimal after Undersea Japan Quake

November 16, 2006

A strong undersea earthquake south of the Kuril Islands off Japan’s northwest coast, which measured up to 8.1 on the Richter Scale, failed to produce any significant tsunami’s

Following the quake, warnings went out across the Pacific, from the Japan Meteorological Agency and the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Hawaii. Authorities feared tsunamis could reach up to 2 meters (6.6 feet) in height, but fortunately only moderate waves of from one to two feet – less than a meter – hit the northern Japanese coast.

The alerts have now been cancelled, and there have been no reports of damages or injuries.

The earthquake struck about 390 kms (234 miles) southeast of Sakhalin Island at around 8:15 p.m. local time. The island was occupied by the Soviet Union at the end of World War II, and remains Russian territory; it is also claimed by Japan.

The tsunami warnings triggered evacuations along the northeastern coast of Hokkaido. Local residents have now returned to their homes following cancellation of the warnings.

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