Japan quake: Buildings swaying for 2 minutes

More than 150 injured in quake in Japan: hospitals

From Channel NewsAsia, Posted: 16 July 2007 1135 hrs

TOKYO – A powerful 6.8-magnitude earthquake rattled Japan on Monday, injuring more than 150 people as it toppled houses, triggered mudslides and set off a blaze at a nuclear power plant.

In areas northwest of Tokyo, which were hardest hit, houses were reduced to rubble and a bridge was nearly cracked in two by the force of the mid-morning quake, Japanese television footage showed.

The government set up a crisis-management centre after the quake, which was powerful enough to shake skyscrapers and send goods flying from the shelves of stores in Tokyo more than 200 kilometres (125 miles) away from the epicentre.

Read more at Channel NewsAsia

I just contacted my friend in Tokyo. He said the buildings were swaying for two whole minutes and that it was “quite scary”. Two minutes in earthquake time must have seemed like eternity when you are in a high rise building in downtown Tokyo.

CNA reported that about 150 people were injured and there have been two reports of deaths. If a 6.8 magnitude earthquake happened anywhere else in the world so close to cities, that country would be facing a major catastrophie with hundreds, if not thousands of people killed or injured. I really take my hat off to the Japanese for making all their buildings so earthquake resistant.

Author: Gerald Giam

Gerald Giam is the Member of Parliament for Aljunied GRC. He is a member of the Workers' Party of Singapore. The opinions expressed on this page are his alone.

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