Media Outlets Pass Off an Old Image as Powerful Earthquake in Japan

The image is from the earthquake that hit Fukushima in 2021.

2 min read

A powerful 7.3 magnitude earthquake shook the coast of Fukushima in northern Japan on Wednesday evening, 16 March, triggering a tsunami advisory.

As per reports, four people were killed and over 100 were injured. Amid this, a photo, which showed scenes of destruction, was shared by several media houses and journalists claiming it to be from Japan.

However, we found out that the photo dates back to 2021 when an earthquake of similar magnitude had hit the Fukushima Prefecture on 13 February that year.



DD News posted the picture on its Twitter handle and mentioned the details of the earthquake.

The image is from the earthquake that hit Fukushima in 2021.

An archived version of the tweet can be viewed here.

(Source: Twitter/Screenshot)

We found the similar mistake in a tweet by Aditya Tiwari, a journalist with Indian Hindi-language daily newspaper Dainik Bhaskar.

News outlet Mojo Story, too, shared the same picture claiming it to be from the devastating earthquake that hit Japan yesterday.

Indian news channel WION, too used the same picture in its article published on 16 March 2022.


We conducted a reverse image search on the picture and found the same image published in The Japan Times on 14 February 2021.

Using the keyword ‘Japan earthquake 2021’ along with the image, we conducted a search again and found it in a report published by the news agency Reuters on 14 February 2021 and was credited to Kyodo, a Japanese news agency.

The image is from the earthquake that hit Fukushima in 2021.

Report published by The Japan Times on 14 February 2021.

The Japan Times

A 7.3 magnitude earthquake had struck the Fukushima prefecture back on 13 February 2021. According to reports, over 100 people were injured.


While it is true that an earthquake shook the coast of Fukushim on 16 March, but the image that is being shared in from 2021.

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