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BIG Earthquake

July 23rd, 2005

It’s mostly over, but it’s still rocking as I write this. That had to be the biggest earthquake I have ever experienced. More as news comes in.

It also felt close, by the way–while the later shakes were horizontal, the first ones were vertical.

Update 4:40: Okay, it’s being reported as a 5.7 on the Richter scale, 90 km beneath Chiba. So it wasn’t nearby (I guess the later shakes were the better indicator), but it was close enough, and it sure felt big as hell here in Eastern Tama. If it was that powerful here, I hate to think about what it must have felt like in Chiba…

Update 4:43: Just felt a small aftershock. The epicenter seems to have been close to Narita. Addendum: No, closer to Chiba City, with 10-15 km. Farther from Narita than from Chiba.

Update 5:20: According to this page (a Japan quake page I just discovered), the quake was felt most strongly in East Tokyo, even stronger than in Chiba. On the Japanese scale of 7, the quake registered a strong 5 in Tokyo’s Adachi Ward, and a “weak 5” in Edogawa and Ota Wards. In Chiba itself, the quake registered only as a weak 5 in six locations. The quake registered as a 4 as far away as Atami City, Shizuoka, more than 100 km distant.

Update 5:42: Reports coming in: no deaths or even injuries reported so far. One partially-collapsed building in Edogawa, some small fires across Tokyo, and trains stopped and delayed all over the region. There’s a fireworks show at 7:20pm in Chofu today (near where I am), and so some people might be delayed or inconvenienced by the train stoppages.

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  1. July 23rd, 2005 at 21:37 | #1

    Funny thing. I was in Tokyo station during the quake (not that far from Chiba) and felt absolutely nothing… bummer :-) Indeed, with the trains stopped, I had to make my way back to Shibuya on foot.

  2. BlogD
    July 23rd, 2005 at 22:07 | #2

    My brother, giving lessons in Tokyo, said he felt it big too, but his wife, who was waiting for a train on the platform at Kudanshita, felt nothing more than a little vibrating on the platform, nothing more.

    Maybe the train platforms are reinforced or have shock absorbers….

  3. YouKnowWho
    July 24th, 2005 at 04:43 | #3

    Perhaps the buildings are a little springy and one feels the spring of the building when the thing goes. Perhaps the ground has less movement. Perhaps the springy in the buildings keeps them from cracking. Better to spring than to crack.

  4. July 24th, 2005 at 07:44 | #4

    I was at my office in Ohta-ku when it happened. It knocked over several of the books on my desk and shut down the elevator in our building, but no other damage. It was, however, the first time an earthquake has made me feel the need to duck for cover. 😉

  5. July 24th, 2005 at 23:07 | #5

    The reason why people in the subways couldn’t feel anything is because earthquakes happen above ground. Everyone knows that! 😉

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