Japan: Victims Dead After Massive Earthquake Rocks Kumamoto

Southern Japan was hit by an 6.5-magnitude earthquake last night. In the aftermath, it’s left some Kumamoto residents displaced and lost within the rubble.

Around 9:25 p.m. local, on Thursday evening, Kumamoto, Japan, experienced violent shakes. While the earthquake didn’t pose any tsunami threats, it did leave multiple residents stranded in the aftermath. CBC News reports that two people were killed in the violent shakes. The source mentions that one of the earthquake victims died shortly after being pulled from the collapsed rubble. Then, the other died in a fire. Another earthquake victim was rescued. However, upon rescue, the person was undergoing heart and lung failure. There has been no update on whether the victim survived.

However, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe — as reported CBS News — told sources that Japan has mobilized police, firefighter, and self-defense forces to help in the natural disaster. According to the source, Abe stated that earthquake rescue efforts will persist throughout the night.

The source notes that Mashiki was the hardest hit during Japan’s earthquake. One of southern Japan’s residents mentioned that the earthquake lasted approximately 30 seconds.

According to SeattlePost-Intelligencer, the source notes the account of a local resident, Takahiko Morita. Morita’s a resident of Mashiki, which is said to have been at the center of the earthquake.

“There was a ka-boom and the whole house shook violently sideways. Furniture and bookshelves fell down, books were all over the floor.”

The Japanese resident stated that other houses around the neighborhood also collapsed and the waterline was cut off. Due to the possible destruction, officers state that the earthquake may have trapped some of the residents inside, under the rubble. The source reports as follows.

“Mashiki town hall [was] in the dark — apparently having lost power — [and] showed rubble on the road, shards of glass and broken windows, and fire breaking out in some places, with firefighters battling an orange blaze.”

BBC News reports that 16,000 residents in Japan were without power after the earthquake. Likewise, over 38,000 were without gas.

Japan’s Meterological Survey, as reported Seattle PI, mentioned that there was an aftershock nearly 40 minutes after the initial earthquake. It registered at 5.4 magnitude.

Seattle PI reported that 45 earthquake victims were admitted to Red Cross Kumamoto Hospital, in Kumamoto, Japan. The earthquake victims were treated for their injuries. The source also notes that five of these patients had serious injuries as well.

Although the earthquake wasn’t a total catastrophe, Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary, Yoshihide Suga, reported that all damage was being investigated and assessed. CBC News reports Secretary Suga as saying that the true extent of the earthquake’s damage couldn’t be evaluated because of the time of night, and there would be more evidence once day breaks.

However, he did mention that, at the moment, there are no reported nuclear facility abnormalities. Japan’s earthquake’s epicenter was 74 miles away from the Sendai nuclear facility, says the source. BBC News mentions that Genkai reactors were already closed for routine inspections.

In 2011, Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant was destroyed by a 9.0 magnitude earthquake. The tsunami which accompanied that devastating earthquake killed over 18,000 people. Fortunately, so far, such a disaster hasn’t occurred since then. So, what are your thoughts regarding Japan’s earthquake?

One commentator for CBC News mentioned that earthquakes are so commonplace in Japan that the disasters don’t really get residents excited. Via the page, Sunny Daze stated as follows.

“The Japanese are so phlegmatic when it comes to earthquakes. Even my son, who has lived there for six years, says that you wake up in the middle of the night because your bed is moving and you just think ‘Oh, another earthquake’ and go straight back to sleep. Hopefully no deaths in this one.”

However, since there were two deaths from the earthquake, surely emotions are stirred. What do you think? Do you feel the same about Japan’s earthquake as the commentator? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.

[Photo by Masterpress/Getty Images News]