Dozens of People Killed in Earthquakes

Dozens of People Killed in Earthquakes

( – Certain regions of the earth have earned monikers that describe natural events that typically happen in that region — hurricane alley, tornado alley, and the Ring of Fire. The first two are self-explanatory, and the third represents an area with frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. According to SBS News, about 90% of the world’s earthquakes happen there. Japan sits at the top of the Ring of Fire and recently experienced several such events.

On January 1, CBS News reported that the Asian nation experienced a series of powerful earthquakes, starting off the west coast of central Japan. The first hit a magnitude of 5.7, followed by a stronger 7.6 magnitude, before easing back down to 6.1, 4.5, 4.6, and 4.8. These all happened in under 30 minutes, causing tsunami waves to hit the nation’s shores. The outlet reported there were around 20 earthquakes in total.

According to an LA Times report from the following day, at least 57 people died in the quakes, and officials warned that more earthquakes could be on the way. Other later reports increased the number to 62. In fact, there were well over 100 aftershocks in the region. Prime Minister Fumio Kishida announced that Japan deployed 1,000 soldiers to join the rescue efforts in the region. He said they were working against time to save the lives of those “trapped in homes.” Aerial footage showed landslides, a fire, and boats thrown about in the water.

Most of the casualties were in Wajima and Suzu, where tens of thousands of people have also lost their homes. With the ongoing quakes and the scale of destruction, the Japanese government doesn’t have a complete picture of the damage caused by the events.

President Joe Biden released a statement from him and the first lady, sending prayers to those affected in Japan. He said his administration was talking with Japanese officials and committed to “provide any necessary assistance” to help in this crisis.

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