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Water، gas supplies still cut in northern Osaka after deadly quake، death toll revised to 3

Tuesday 19/June/2018 - 09:49 AM
Sada El Balad
edited by: Basant Ahmed
Water and gas supplies remained disrupted in northern Osaka Prefecture on Tuesday، a day after an earthquake that had a magnitude of 6.1 and registered lower 6 on the Japanese intensity scale to 7 rocked the Osaka metropolitan area، killing at least three and injuring more than 370، The Japan Times reported.

A smaller earthquake occurred in the same area in the early hours of Tuesday as many spent a sleepless night at evacuation centers set up in the prefecture. The number of evacuees stood at about 1،700 as of 7:30 a.m. on Tuesday، according to the Osaka prefectural government.

“I keep on waking up every time there is an aftershock،” said a local resident taking shelter at an evacuation center in Takatsuki، northeast of Osaka.

Water supplies continued to be cut off in parts of the cities of Takatsuki and Minoo، prompting local authorities to dispatch water tank trucks.

Some 112،000 households in the cities of Takatsuki، Ibaraki، Settsu and Suita were without gas as of Tuesday morning. Osaka Gas Co. said the supply is expected to be back on at all affected households by next Monday.

While authorities reported Monday that the quake killed three people in their 80s and a 9-year-old girl، police said Tuesday that an 81-year-old woman in Takatsuki، who had been listed as among the three elderly people who perished، is now believed to have died from illness.

A total of 334 houses have been damaged by the quake، according to a tally by the central government. Of these، 265 were in Osaka Prefecture، 64 in Kyoto Prefecture، thee in Nara Prefecture and two in Hyogo Prefecture.

Disaster management minister Hachiro Okonogi said he will lead a survey team to the area to assess the extent of the damage.

The major earthquake، which rocked Osaka Prefecture and the surrounding area at about 7:58 a.m. Monday، killed 9-year-old Rina Miyake after a wall around her school’s swimming pool collapsed on her as she was walking to the school.

Police have launched an investigation into the fatality، suspecting it could be a case of negligence resulting in death، according to investigative sources.

“If it had been a wire fence instead of a concrete-block wall، this would not have happened،” said a 36-year-old woman who visited the site with her 10-year-old daughter to mourn the girl’s death، as residents placed flowers and sweets at the spot.

Education minister Yoshimasa Hayashi said he plans to instruct operators of elementary schools and junior high schools nationwide to conduct emergency safety inspections of their concrete-block walls.

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