Japan quake death toll doubles to 16

Published: September 07, 2018 10:24:24 | Updated: September 11, 2018 21:27:12

Members of the Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF) search for survivors from a house damaged by a landslide caused by an earthquake in Atsuma town, Hokkaido, northern Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo on Friday — Kyodo photo via Reuters

The death toll from a powerful earthquake that rattled the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido doubled to at least 16, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Friday, with more than half the island’s 5.3 million residents still without power.

The 6.7-magnitude quake, which hit before dawn on Thursday, triggered landslides that buried houses and paralysed Hokkaido with widespread power and transport cuts, according to a Reuters report.

The death toll had been put at eight overnight but NHK cited Abe in reporting the new total soon after he held an emergency meeting early on Friday.

Another 26 people were missing, disaster management authorities said.

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