Power restored at 1.4 million households in Hokkaido

Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido has been hit by a powerful earthquake triggering landslides that engulfed houses

Japan's match with Chile has been cancelled after an quake struck the island of Hokkaido on Thursday.

Houses in the town were hit by landslides, and one report said five residents were found with no vital signs.

The Philippine Embassy in Japan is checking on the condition of Filipino residents in the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido after a 6.7-magnitude quake hit early Thursday morning, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said.

Police, firefighters and Self-Defense Forces personnel used heavy machinery and manually combed through rubble in the town of Atsuma where massive landslides buried a number of homes.

The Japanese national broadcaster NHK, citing its own tally, reported that 125 people were injured and almost 40 are feared missing.

Much of the damage was done by landslides destroying houses and cutting power lines
Much of the damage was done by landslides destroying houses and cutting power lines

The quake, which left over 300 other people injured, caused a prefecture-wide blackout Thursday and left many homes without water, while over 10,000 people were forced to spend the night at evacuation centers.

The collapsed remains of what appeared to be houses or barns were strewn about.

Peak power demand in Hokkaido, however, reaches 3.8 GW, so the restoration of all power across the island should take at least another week, Seko said.

Utility officials are starting up hydroelectric plants to help restart the main thermal plant, Seko said, adding that he to get power back "within a few hours". It was also trying to resume other train services on Friday afternoon, a spokesman said.

Japan mobilized 20,000 rescue workers on Hokkaido on Thursday after being wracked by a magnitude-6.7 natural disaster just south of Sapporo, Hokkaido island's main city, and multiple aftershocks. New Chitose is a major tourist gateway to the island, known for its mountains, lakes and abundant farmland and seafood, and more than 200 flights and 40,000 passengers would be affected, Kyodo News Agency said.

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Japan is still recovering from the worst typhoon to hit the country in 25 years, which struck the western part of the country on Tuesday, claiming at least 11 lives and causing major damage to the region's main airport.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Thursday that Kansai Airport will partially resume operations by the end of Friday.and added that worldwide flights will restart as soon as they are ready.

A doctor in Abira, the town next to Atsuma said: "Without electricity, there's nothing I can do except to write prescriptions".

Moments after the initial quake, which struck 62 kilometres (39 miles) southeast of the regional capital Sapporo, an aftershock measuring 5.3 rocked the area, with dozens more tremors felt throughout the day.

The central government set up a crisis management taskforce at the prime minister's office. Saving people's lives is the government's utmost priority and we will deal with the disaster relief collectively.

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And around 30 residents were missing in Atsuma, where the intensity of the quake is estimated to have been an upper 6 on the Japanese seismic intensity scale of 7.

The station's fuel rods are being cooled with emergency power supplied by diesel generators, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told reporters on Thursday.

Farming and tourism are two of the island's biggest economic drivers, but there is some industry.

It posed no tsunami risk, the country's meteorological agency said. Seismologists have said another such quake could strike the city at any time.

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