A 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck near the east coast of Honshu, Japan, sparking a warning that a tsunami could hit.
Japan public broadcaster NHK has warned residents a tsunami of one metre was expected for Miyagi Prefecture.
The earthquake hit 57km north-east of Sendai-shi 20 minutes ago, the European Mediterranean Seismological Centre has reported.
It struck at 6.09pm.
The epicentre in Miyagi prefecture is the same area that was heavily damaged during a huge earthquake and tsunami in 2011.
The warning stated: “It is dangerous in the sea or near the coast. Those who are in the sea should immediately get out of the sea and leave the coast.
“The tide will continue to be fast, so please do not enter the sea or approach the coast until the warning is cleared.”
Yoshihide Suga, the country’s Prime Minister, called for a crisis meeting at his residence in Tokyo in response to the quake.
Strong shaking was been reported in nearby Namie, Fukushima and Sendai, with several in those areas also reporting power cuts.