Saturday, October 27, 2012

Tsunami Warning!

Even though I've lived near the sea most of my life, this is a new one for me. We're currently under a tsunami warning after a 7.7 magnitude earthquake hit off the coast in British Columbia (about 400 miles south of Juneau). While we didn't feel the earthquake here at the house, a friend of mine in Petersburg, Alaska did- and quite well. I wonder if others in Juneau were able to feel it. This house is built into the side of a steep slope- perhaps it's harder to feel tremors?

We'll definitely be fine here in the house- we're quite a ways up from the water. I wish it were light out so we could see if anything is happening here or not. It's unlikely much will happen here in Juneau. I just hope all the boats in the harbors are okay.

My poor aunt and uncle are in Seattle right now, and they received a call from a friend who told them the 7.7 magnitude earthquake had struck Juneau. She called and said, "Sooooo, is everything okay there?" They were quite relieved to hear that they had received some misinformation.

Emergency Broadcast System Alert

Official tsunami warning from NOAA...


000
WEAK51 PAAQ 280334
TSUAK1

BULLETIN
PUBLIC TSUNAMI MESSAGE NUMBER 2
NWS WEST COAST/ALASKA TSUNAMI WARNING CENTER PALMER AK
834 PM PDT SAT OCT 27 2012

THE MAGNITUDE IS UPDATED TO 7.7.  THE WARNING ZONE REMAINS THE
SAME.

...THE TSUNAMI WARNING CONTINUES IN EFFECT FOR THE COASTAL
   AREAS OF BRITISH COLUMBIA AND ALASKA FROM THE NORTH TIP OF
   VANCOUVER ISLAND BRITISH COLUMBIA TO CAPE DECISION
   ALASKA/LOCATED 85 MILES SE OF SITKA/...

...THIS MESSAGE IS INFORMATION ONLY FOR COASTAL AREAS OF
   CALIFORNIA - OREGON - WASHINGTON AND BRITISH COLUMBIA FROM
   THE CALIFORNIA-MEXICO BORDER TO THE NORTH TIP OF VANCOUVER
   ISLAND BRITISH COLUMBIA...

...THIS MESSAGE IS INFORMATION ONLY FOR COASTAL AREAS OF
   ALASKA FROM CAPE DECISION ALASKA/LOCATED 85 MILES SE OF
   SITKA/ TO ATTU ALASKA...

A TSUNAMI WARNING MEANS... ALL COASTAL RESIDENTS IN THE WARNING
AREA WHO ARE NEAR THE BEACH OR IN LOW-LYING REGIONS SHOULD MOVE
IMMEDIATELY INLAND TO HIGHER GROUND AND AWAY FROM ALL HARBORS AND
INLETS INCLUDING THOSE SHELTERED DIRECTLY FROM THE SEA. THOSE
FEELING THE EARTH SHAKE... SEEING UNUSUAL WAVE ACTION... OR THE
WATER LEVEL RISING OR RECEDING MAY HAVE ONLY A FEW MINUTES BEFORE
THE TSUNAMI ARRIVAL AND SHOULD MOVE IMMEDIATELY. HOMES AND
SMALL BUILDINGS ARE NOT DESIGNED TO WITHSTAND TSUNAMI IMPACTS.
DO NOT STAY IN THESE STRUCTURES.

ALL RESIDENTS WITHIN THE WARNED AREA SHOULD BE ALERT FOR
INSTRUCTIONS BROADCAST FROM THEIR LOCAL CIVIL AUTHORITIES.
EARTHQUAKES OF THIS SIZE ARE KNOWN TO GENERATE TSUNAMIS.

AT 804 PM PACIFIC DAYLIGHT TIME ON OCTOBER 27 AN EARTHQUAKE WITH
PRELIMINARY MAGNITUDE 7.7 OCCURRED 25 MILES/40 KM SOUTH OF
SANDSPIT BRITISH COLUMBIA.
EARTHQUAKES OF THIS SIZE ARE KNOWN TO GENERATE TSUNAMIS.
IF A TSUNAMI HAS BEEN GENERATED THE WAVES WILL FIRST REACH
LANGARA ISLAND BRITISH COLUMBIA AT 916 PM PDT ON OCTOBER 27.
ESTIMATED TSUNAMI ARRIVAL TIMES AND MAPS ALONG WITH SAFETY RULES
AND OTHER INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND ON THE WEB SITE
WCATWC.ARH.NOAA.GOV.

TSUNAMIS CAN BE DANGEROUS WAVES THAT ARE NOT SURVIVABLE. WAVE
HEIGHTS ARE AMPLIFIED BY IRREGULAR SHORELINE AND ARE DIFFICULT TO
FORECAST. TSUNAMIS OFTEN APPEAR AS A STRONG SURGE AND MAY BE
PRECEDED BY A RECEDING WATER LEVEL.  MARINERS IN WATER DEEPER
THAN 600 FEET SHOULD NOT BE AFFECTED BY A TSUNAMI. WAVE HEIGHTS
WILL INCREASE RAPIDLY AS WATER SHALLOWS. TSUNAMIS ARE A SERIES OF
OCEAN WAVES WHICH CAN BE DANGEROUS FOR SEVERAL HOURS AFTER THE
INITIAL WAVE ARRIVAL. DO NOT RETURN TO EVACUATED AREAS UNTIL AN
ALL CLEAR IS GIVEN BY LOCAL CIVIL AUTHORITIES.

PACIFIC COASTAL REGIONS OUTSIDE CALIFORNIA/ OREGON/ WASHINGTON/
BRITISH COLUMBIA AND ALASKA SHOULD REFER TO THE PACIFIC TSUNAMI
WARNING CENTER MESSAGES FOR INFORMATION ON THIS EVENT AT
PTWC.WEATHER.GOV.

THIS MESSAGE WILL BE UPDATED IN 30 MINUTES OR SOONER IF
THE SITUATION WARRANTS. THE TSUNAMI MESSAGE WILL REMAIN
IN EFFECT UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION STAY TUNED
TO NOAA WEATHER RADIO... YOUR LOCAL TV OR RADIO STATIONS... OR SEE
THE WEB SITE WCATWC.ARH.NOAA.GOV.



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