A strong earthquake hit a wide area in Hokkaido on Thursday night, registering lower six on the Japanese seismic intensity scale of seven in the town of Atsuma in the prefecture. No tsunami warning was issued.
According to the Japan Meteorological Agency, the quake occurred at about 9:22 p.m. with the focus 30 kilometers below the central-eastern Iburi region of Hokkaido. It registered a preliminary magnitude of 5.7.
According to the agency, upper five on the Japanese scale was observed in the towns of Abira and Mukawa, and lower five in Kita and Teine wards in Sapporo as well as the city of Chitose and the towns of Naganuma and Biratori.
The government set up a special office at the Prime Minister's Office.