A major earthquake hit off the coast of Fukushima, Japan, at 23:08 JST on 13 February 2021, in the same as the Great Tohoku Earthquake of 2011 that caused the Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster.  Less seriously, but relevant to the submarine cable industry, the 2011 earthquake also caused numerous submarine cable outages.

Saturday’s quake is being reported as an aftershock of the devastating 2011 earthquake. While Japan’s meteorological agency reported the quake as having a magnitude of 7.1, other news sources have it as a magnitude 7.3 quake. Several injuries were reported but fortunately there were no reports of fatalities as of press time.

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SubCableWorld does not as yet have much information about the impact of the earthquake on the submarine cable network, but a press announcement from Hong Kong-based international carrier HGC stated that its international network and various telecom services including international voice and messaging services remain normal. This announcement was received by SubCableWorld about 12 hours after the quake. 

HGC said in its press release that it has been closely monitoring the situation since the incident [on Saturday] to ensure that the international telecommunications services operate as normal.

When the 2011 earthquake in the same area disrupted international telecommunications, HGC said it took immediate contingency measures and restored the services to normal within 4 hours.