Japan Earthquake: 30 Killed, Rescue Teams Scramble for Survivors

A powerful earthquake in Japan claims 30 lives as rescue teams battle damaged roads and infrastructure to reach survivors in isolated areas.

A devastating earthquake struck Japan on New Year’s Day, claiming at least 30 lives and leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. The powerful tremor, measuring a preliminary magnitude of 7.6, sent shockwaves through the nation, triggering tsunami waves along the west coast.

Rescue operations faced significant challenges as teams struggled to navigate wrecked roads and reach isolated areas where buildings lay in ruins and tens of thousands remained without power. The hardest-hit zone, the Noto peninsula in Ishikawa prefecture, saw an influx of thousands of army personnel, firefighters, and police officers from various regions.

The catastrophe disrupted transportation networks, suspending numerous rail services, ferries, and flights to the region. Noto airport faced closure due to severe damage, leaving 500 individuals stranded in its parking lot.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida emphasized the race against time in the search and rescue efforts. Wrecked roads hindered access to the northern tip of the peninsula, where helicopter surveys revealed extensive fires and widespread damage to infrastructure.

With Ishikawa authorities confirming 30 deaths, half of them in the severely affected Wajima city, the nation faces an arduous task of assessing and addressing the full extent of the aftermath. Prime Minister Kishida, during an emergency disaster meeting, underscored the monumental challenges ahead for rescue teams amidst the widespread devastation.

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