A strong aftershock related earthquake has again struck northern Japan just about one month from the initial devastating quake on March 11.

The Thursday evening (local time) quake was reported to be a magnitude 7.4, and triggered another tsunami alert warning for a potential 4 to 6 feet wave, which apparently has now been suspended.  The quake was located off the coast of Miyagi prefecture, approximately 16 miles underwater.  One news report indicates the occurrence of two separate large aftershocks of 7.4 magnitude, one located 41 miles east of Sendai occurring at 16 miles depth, and one located 61 miles east of Sendai at a depth of 25 miles.

A news report from The Telegraph in London notes that Japan’s prime minister summoned his senior officials just before midnight local time.  Power blackouts were being experienced across five northern prefectures and major expressways were closed as a precautionary measure.  Other preliminary news reports are indicating that the previously damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power complex had to again be evacuated, but officials indicate no additional damage.

A 7.4 magnitude quake is significant in any situation, and this current aftershock is the fourth magnitude-7 or higher quake since March 11.  It is also unfortunately another sign that the earthquake activity in this region remains a concern.

Our thoughts and prayers are again centered on the people of Japan as they deal with this ongoing series of events and tragedies.  We trust that there will be no additional significant human casualties.

In terms of global supply chain impacts, we will all have to wait and assess what additional challenges this latest occurrence will add to the ongoing efforts of industry supply chain impact assessment.

Bob Ferrari