Moderate mag. 5.9 earthquake - Japan Sea, 81 km northwest of Minatomachi, Yoichi-gun, Hokkaido, Japan, on Tuesday, Jan 12, 2021 11:39 am (GMT +9) -

Moderate mag. 5.9 earthquake - Japan Sea, 81 km northwest of Minatomachi, Yoichi-gun, Hokkaido, Japan, on Tuesday, Jan 12, 2021 11:39 am (GMT +9)

Moderate magnitude 5.9 earthquake at 211 km depth

12 Jan 02:48 UTC: First to report: GFZ after 8 minutes.
12 Jan 02:50: Magnitude recalculated from 5.5 to 5.6. Hypocenter depth recalculated from 213.0 to 217.0 km (from 132 to 135 mi). Epicenter location corrected by 7.8 km (4.8 mi) towards SSE.
12 Jan 06:10: Magnitude recalculated from 5.6 to 5.9. Hypocenter depth recalculated from 217.0 to 211.0 km (from 135 to 131 mi). Epicenter location corrected by 9.6 km (6 mi) towards W.
Update Tue, 12 Jan 2021, 02:57
Moderate yet deep magnitude 5.6 quake hits 88 km northwest of Otaru, Japan in the morning
5.6 quake 12 Jan 11:39 am (GMT +9)
5.6 quake 12 Jan 11:39 am (GMT +9)
Just 17 minutes ago, a 5.6-magnitude earthquake struck near Otaru, Otaru-shi, Hokkaido, Japan. The tremor was recorded in the morning on Tuesday 12 January 2021 at 11:39 am local time, at an intermediate to considerable depth of 217 km below the surface.
The event was filed by the German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ), the first seismological agency to report it.
Our monitoring service identified a second report from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) which listed the quake at magnitude 5.9. Other agencies reporting the same quake include Indonesia's Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysical Agency (BMKG) at magnitude 5.3, European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre (EMSC) at magnitude 5.9, and NIED at magnitude 6.2.
Based on the preliminary seismic data, the quake should not have caused any significant damage, but was probably felt by many people as light vibration in the area of the epicenter.
Weak shaking might have been felt in Yoichi (pop. 22,800) located 74 km from the epicenter, and Otaru (pop. 143,800) 88 km away.
VolcanoDiscovery will automatically update magnitude and depth if these change and follow up if other significant news about the quake become available. If you're in the area, please send us your experience through our reporting mechanism, either online or via our mobile app. This will help us provide more first-hand updates to anyone around the globe who wants to know more about this quake.

Download the Volcanoes & Earthquakes app and get one of the fastest seismic alerts online:
Android | iOS

Earthquake data

Date & time: Jan 12, 2021 02:39:43 UTC -
Local time at epicenter: Tuesday, Jan 12, 2021 11:39 am (GMT +9)
Magnitude: 5.9
Depth: 211.0 km
Epicenter latitude / longitude: 43.72°N / 140.07°E (Japan Sea, Japan)
Antipode: 43.72°S / 39.93°W
Nearest volcano: Niseko (100 km / 62 mi)
Nearby towns and cities:
81 km (50 mi) NW of Minatomachi (pop: 22,800) --> See nearby quakes!
90 km (56 mi) NNW of Iwanai (pop: 15,600) --> See nearby quakes!
96 km (59 mi) NW of Otaru (pop: 143,800) --> See nearby quakes!
117 km (72 mi) WNW of Ishikari (pop: 57,300) --> See nearby quakes!
126 km (79 mi) NW of Sapporo (pop: 1,883,000) --> See nearby quakes!
138 km (86 mi) WNW of Ebetsu (pop: 134,000) --> See nearby quakes!
148 km (92 mi) WNW of Iwamizawa (pop: 85,100) --> See nearby quakes!
163 km (101 mi) NW of Chitose (pop: 92,900) --> See nearby quakes!
173 km (108 mi) NW of Tomakomai (pop: 174,800) --> See nearby quakes!
894 km (555 mi) N of Tokyo (pop: 8,336,600) --> See nearby quakes!
133 km (83 mi) SW of Yagishiri Island (pop: 273) --> See nearby quakes!
180 km (112 mi) NNE of Okushiri Island (pop: 3,340) --> See nearby quakes!
233 km (145 mi) W of Hokkaido Island (pop: 5,500,000) --> See nearby quakes!
Weather at epicenter at time of quake:
Overcast Clouds -1.2°C (30 F), humidity: 89%, wind: 5 m/s (9 kts) from S
Primary data source: GFZ (German Research Centre for Geosciences)
Estimated released energy: 4.5 x 1013 joules (12.4 gigawatt hours, equivalent to 10676 tons of TNT or 0.7 atomic bombs!) | about seismic energy
Show interactive Map
[smaller] [bigger]
If you felt this quake (or if you were near the epicenter), please share your experience and submit a short "I felt it" report! Other users would love to hear about it!
If you did NOT feel the quake although you were in the area, please report it! Your contribution is valuable to earthquake science, seismic hazard analysis and mitigation efforts. You can use your device location or the map to indicate where you were during the earthquake. Thank you!

Data for the same earthquake reported by different agencies

Info: The more agencies report about the same quake and post similar data, the more confidence you can have in the data. It takes normally up to a few hours until earthquake parameters are calculated with near-optimum precision.
5.9211 kmHokkaido, Japan RegionGFZ
5.3374 kmHokkaido, Japan RegionBMKG
5.9214 km80 Km NW of Yoichi, JapanUSGS
6.1208 kmJapan [Sea]INGV
5.6230 km日本北海道地区, JapanCEIC
5.9213 kmHokkaido, Japan RegionGeoAu
5.8208 kmHokkaido, Japan RegionNIEP

User reports for this quake

User reports estimate the perceived ground shaking intensity according to the MMI (Modified Mercalli Intensity) scale.
There are no user reports for this quake.
Volcanoes & Earthquakes - new app for Android


[More info]

Recorded aftershocks, latest first (3 quakes)

Date and timeMag
Mar 6, 2021 14:01
46 weeks ago

210 km
Japan Sea, 87 km NW of Sapporo, Hokkaido, JapanMore
Feb 11, 2021 13:05
49 weeks ago

239 km
Japan Sea, 87 km NW of Sapporo, Hokkaido, JapanMore
Jan 12, 2021 08:42
1 year 1 weeks ago

228 km
Japan Sea, 72 km NW of Minatomachi, Yoichi-gun, Hokkaido, JapanMore

Earlier earthquakes in the same area

Try our free app!
Volcanoes & Earthquakes - new app for Android
Android | iOS version
Why is there advertising on this site?
Support us - Help us upgrade our services!
We truly love working to bring you the latest volcano and earthquake data from around the world. Maintaining our website and our free apps does require, however, considerable time and resources.
We need financing to increase hard- and software capacity as well as support our editor team. We're aiming to achieve uninterrupted service wherever an earthquake or volcano eruption unfolds, and your donations can make it happen! Every donation will be highly appreciated. If you find the information useful and would like to support our team in integrating further features, write great content, and in upgrading our soft- and hardware, please make a donation (PayPal or Online credit card payment).

Planned features:
  • Improved multilanguage support
  • Tsunami alerts
  • Faster responsiveness
Thanks to your past donations, these features have been added recently:
  • Earthquake archive from 1900 onwards
  • Detailed quake stats
  • Additional seismic data sources
Download and Upgrade the Volcanoes & Earthquakes app to get one of the fastest seismic and volcano alerts online:
Android | IOS
Thank you!
Copyrights: VolcanoDiscovery and other sources as noted.
Use of material: Most texts and images, in particular photographs, on this website are protected by copyright. Further reproduction and use of without authorization is usually not consented. If you are not sure or need licensing rights for photographs, for example for publications and commercial use, please contact us.