Earthquake shakes Osaka: three dead and 40 injured

The earthquake struck the city at 8 am, in full rush hour. The quake reached a magnitude of 6.1 and level six out of seven of the Japanese intensity scale. The epicenter at 13 km depth. Strong aftershocks are expected.

Osaka (AsiaNews / Agencies) - A magnitude 6.1 earthquake rocked the region of Osaka (central Japan), causing at least three deaths and 40 injured.

The quake hit at 8 am, in rush hour, with the epicenter to the north of the city at a depth of 13 km. Despite the relatively low magnitude, the tremor touched level six of the Japanese intensity scale, out of a maximum of seven. Level six means the tremors are so strong it is difficult to remain upright.

Three people lost their lives: two elderly people and a nine-year-old girl, killed under the collapse of a school wall. According to NHK, around 200 people are injured. There has been extensive damage to buildings and infrastructure. At least 170 thousand people are without electricity; public transport has been stopped for security reasons.

The Japanese Meteorological Agency and the Government warned people to remain alert: there were several aftershocks, and others could follow.

The Japanese archipelago is located above the so-called "Pacific Ring of Fire”, where most of the earthquakes and global volcanic eruptions occur. On March 11, 2011, a devastating 9.0 magnitude earthquake triggered a 40-meter tsunami, killing more than 15,000 people and causing the Fukushima nuclear disaster.