Strong Earthquake Reported Near Hokkaido, Japan

HOKKAIDO, JAPAN (KTLA)  – A powerful earthquake struck northern Japan on Saturday, causing strong tremors across the island of Hokkaido but generating no tsunami or immediate reports of damage.

The quake hit near the town of Obihiro at a depth of roughly 75 miles.

Japan’s Meteorological Agency put the magnitude of the quake at 6.4  The U.S. Geological Survey put its magnitude at 6.9.

Japanese authorities said there was no threat of a tsunami from the quake, and public broadcaster NHK cited police in Hokkaido as saying there were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.

Kyodo News reported blackouts in some areas and a number of highways closed.

Strong tremors were felt throughout Hokkaido.  It is Japan’s second-largest island and a popular destination for skiing.

Tremors were also felt on the main island of Honshu to its south.

Several of Japan’s nuclear facilities are located in Aomori prefecture in Honshu’s north, but the companies which run the facilities said there were no abnormalities reported after the quake.

There was also no abnormality reported in Tomari, another nuclear plant in Hokkaido.

Tremors from the powerful quake reportedly lasted for about a minute.