A magnitude 6.8 earthquake off the Japanese coast rattled Tokyo early on Wednesday but did little damage, the national Meteorological Agency said. No tsunami warning was issued. Two people suffered minor injuries from falling furniture, public television broadcaster NHK said reported. An 18-year-old man was hit when his stereo speakers fell onto his bed, and a 25-year-old man was hit by objects rattled off shelves.
There were no other immediate reports of injuries or damage, though the quake woke up some residents of the capital, NHK said. The epicenter of the quake that struck at 01:45 (16:45 GMT) was offshore, 161 kilometers (100 miles) northeast of Tokyo and at a depth of 40 kilometers underwater, according to the US geological survey.
A second quake hit in the same area about half an hour later with a magnitude of 5.3 in the Richter scale, and more aftershocks could hit later, Tamotsu Aketagawa, an official who monitors earthquakes for the national Meteorological Agency, told The Associated Press. "Since it was a very large-scale earthquake, we would expect to see some modest aftershocks," he said.
However, the broadcaster reported that power lines and communications were running normally and no injuries or minor damage had been reported. An hour later, regularly scheduled programing had resumed.
Japan is one of the most earthquake-prone countries in the world, although Tokyo has not been hit with a major quake since the 1923 Great Kanto earthquake killed 140,000 people.
An earthquake of that size, about a magnitude 8, occurs once every 200 to 300 years.