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Hundreds still missing after Japan earthquake

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The Caspian Times is a platform that showcases stories and perspectives from across Eurasia. We aim to inform, inspire and empower our readers with high-quality journalism that covers the diverse and dynamic region.

Rescuers in Japan are rushing to find hundreds of people missing after a devastating New Year’s Day earthquake. A critical 72-hour period to find survivors from when the quake struck ended late on Thursday. On Friday, the death toll from the 7.6 magnitude earthquake in the remote Noto peninsula rose to 92.

However, 242 people are still missing. The earthquake, which was followed by several strong aftershocks, caused widespread damage to buildings and infrastructure, trapping many people under rubble. Thousands of residents in coastal areas were evacuated to shelters after tsunami warnings were issued. Some areas reported waves of up to 1.2 meters

The earthquake also raised concerns about the safety of nuclear plants in the region. Kansai Electric, the operator of two reactors in Fukui prefecture, said there were no abnormalities reported at its facilities. Japan is still recovering from the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, which was triggered by a massive earthquake and tsunami that killed nearly 18,000 people.

The Noto peninsula is known for its rural and ageing communities, which have been struggling with depopulation and lack of resources. Some experts have warned that Japan’s earthquake resilience measures may not be sufficient to protect these vulnerable areas.

The earthquake was the strongest to hit Japan since 2011, and the fourth strongest on record. Japan is located on the Pacific Ring of Fire, a zone of intense seismic activity that experiences frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.

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