Japan earthquake: Magnitude 6.1 tremors hit east coast
It is the third major earthquake to strike around the world in the last 24 hours - following one in Mexico that measured a magnitude of 7.1, while another 6.1 magnitude earthquake stuck New Zealand.
The depth of the earthquake, which struck at 2.37am local time, was measured at 10km. Details of any damage are yet to emerge, and no tsunami warning has yet been issued.
Only 41 people reported feeling the effects of the quake to the US Geological Survey.
A tsunami sparked by an earthquake in the Pacific hit the nuclear plant in Fukushima in 2011 causing a major disaster - with the water disabling the emergency generators required to cool the reactors at the plant after they had automatically shut down.
Residents of the area were evacuated, and an exclusion zone was set up. The zone was eventually made smaller and residents have recently been allowed to return to some areas.
The incident led Japan to close all 54 of its nuclear plants for a time, while five are now back online.