Dozens injured as 6.8 earthquake jolts central Japan (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Dozens injured as 6.8 earthquake jolts central Japan (PHOTOS, VIDEO)
A 6.8-magnitude earthquake has hit central Japan at a shallow depth of 10 kilometres, damaging buildings and injuring at least 39 people according to the latest toll.

The quake struck at 22:08 local time (13:08 GMT) and was centered in the Nagano Prefecture on the main island of Honshu, about 16 kilometers northeast of the city of Omachi. According to the USGS, the quake registered at a magnitude of 6.2 on the Richter scale.

Almost 40 people received injuries, most of them minor, but at least 7 people were reportedly taken to hospital with serious wounds.

Some of the injured were trapped under collapsed buildings, but authorities have managed to recover all those trapped under debris and their lives are not in danger.

An official from the village of Ogawa, near the epicenter of the quake, told Japan’s NHK broadcaster the residents felt a long shake and saw books falling off shelves.

The tremor was felt as far away as the capital, Tokyo, which is about 170 kilometers northwest of the epicenter. The cities of Hotaka and Suzaka, also in Nagano Prefecture, were also in proximity of the tremors – 33 and 36 kilometers away, respectively.

Damage caused by an earthquake is seen in Hakuba town, Nagano prefecture, in this photo taken by Kyodo November 23, 2014 (Reuters / Kyodo)

A landslide that blocked the roads near a ski resort in the affected area, NHK said, adding that about 200 homes were without power.

No tsunami warning has been issued after the devastating earthquake and no suspicious changes were reported in the condition of volcano Ontake, the eruption of which claimed more than 50 lives in September.

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