A powerful earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 7.4 has struck northern Japan, as reported by public broadcaster NHK. The earthquake hit the Noto region in Ishikawa prefecture around 4:10 pm local time (07:10 GMT).
Following the seismic activity, the Japan Meteorological Agency issued a tsunami warning along coastal regions of Ishikawa, Niigata, and Toyama prefectures.
NHK urgently broadcasted a message instructing all residents in the affected areas to evacuate immediately to higher ground. The warning indicated the potential for torrents of water reaching as high as 5 meters (16.5 feet).
Concerns over the impact of the earthquake on nuclear power plants have been raised, with Hokuriku Electric Power checking for irregularities at its facilities. Kansai Electric Power reported no abnormalities at its nuclear power plants at present but affirmed continuous monitoring of the situation.
The earthquake recalls the devastating events of March 11, 2011, when a massive earthquake and tsunami struck northeastern Japan, causing widespread destruction and triggering nuclear meltdowns in Fukushima. Authorities are closely monitoring the situation and urging residents to take immediate safety precautions in response to the current seismic activity.