2013 Santa Cruz tsunami highlights the need for rapid onset tsunami awareness

  • Volcano - Cotopaxi, Ecuador

    5 minutes ago WARNING

  • Volcano - Sabancaya, Peru

    55 minutes ago WARNING

  • Volcano - Semeru, Indonesia

    55 minutes ago WARNING

  • Volcano - Sangay, Ecuador

    55 minutes ago WARNING

  • Highwind - Advisory (Hawaiian Islands)

    1 hour ago ADVISORY

  • Volcano - Sheveluch, Russia

    1 hour ago WARNING

  • Flood - San Juan, PR Region, United States

    1 hour ago WARNING

  • Highsurf - Advisory (Hawaiian Islands)

    1 hour ago ADVISORY

  • Tropical Cyclone - Mandous

    2 hours ago INFORMATION

  • Volcano - Popocatepetl, Mexico

    2 hours ago WARNING

  • Winter Storm - Northwestern, United States

    3 hours ago WARNING

  • Winter Storm - Western, United States

    4 hours ago WARNING

  • Volcano - Fuego, Guatemala

    4 hours ago WARNING

  • Winter Storm - Alaska, United States

    4 hours ago WARNING

  • Earthquake - 5.6 - 2 km NE of Pondaguitan, Philippines

    6 hours ago WATCH

  • Extreme Heat - Northern Argentina

    5 hours ago WARNING

  • Extreme Heat - Eastern Uruguay

    5 hours ago WARNING

  • Floods - Central Peru

    2 days ago WARNING

  • Volcano - Aira, Japan

    6 hours ago WARNING

  • Storms - Southern Portugal

    2 days ago WARNING

  • Storms - Brazil

    2 days ago WARNING

  • Blizzard - Arviat, Nunavut, Canada

    6 hours ago WARNING

  • High Wind - Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

    6 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - W of Dasht Kaur Basin, United Arab Emirates and Oman

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - Limpopo Basin, Southern Africa and Eastern Africa

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Earthquake - 5.8 - 97 km NE of Cabatuan, Philippines

    20 hours ago WATCH

  • Flood - N of Rosario, Entre Ríos and Santa Fe, Argentina

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - New Amsterdam, Mahaica-Berbice, Guyana

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - Ca Mau, Cà Mau, Vietnam

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - NW of Merauke, Papua, Indonesia

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - Chamdo, Qinghai, Xizang and Yunnan, China

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - Salween Basin, S of Salween River, China, India and Myanmar

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - Alto Rio Sanguer, Chubut, Argentina

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - Brahmaputra Basin, China, India and Myanmar

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - SE of Cauvery Basin, Sri Lanka

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - E of Abadan, Khuzestan, Iran

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Flood - Nile Basin, Egypt

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Snowfall - NE of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

    7 hours ago WARNING

  • Earthquake - 5.2 - 151 km ENE of Georgetown, Saint Helena

    8 hours ago ADVISORY

  • Volcano - Reventador, Ecuador

    9 hours ago ADVISORY

  • Landslides - Central Vietnam

    10 hours ago WARNING

  • Storms - Peninsular Malaysia

    10 hours ago WARNING

  • Storms - Brunei

    10 hours ago WARNING

  • Storms - Southern India

    11 hours ago WARNING

  • Storms - Sri Lanka

    11 hours ago WARNING

  • Storms - Tonga

    11 hours ago WARNING

  • Storms - Fiji

    11 hours ago WARNING

  • Storms - South Africa

    12 hours ago WARNING

  • Drought - Eastern Africa

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Congo Basin, Middle Africa and Eastern Africa

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Highwind - Warning (Hawaiian Islands)

    13 hours ago WARNING

  • Storms - Singapore

    21 hours ago WARNING

  • Avalanche - Colorado, United States

    21 hours ago WARNING

  • Earthquake - 5.1 - South Sandwich Islands region

    21 hours ago ADVISORY

  • Winter Storm - Southern Finland

    22 hours ago WARNING

  • Volcano - Dukono, Indonesia

    22 hours ago WATCH

  • Volcano - Ebeko, Russia

    22 hours ago ADVISORY

  • Volcano - Ibu, Indonesia

    23 hours ago WATCH

  • Flood - E of Daan, Heilongjiang, Jilin and Nei Mongol, China

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Yancheng, East China

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - SE of Viseu, Pará, Brazil

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Wildfire - NE of Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

    1 day ago INFORMATION

  • Wildfire - NE of San Ramon de la Nueva Oran, Salta, Argentina

    1 day ago INFORMATION

  • Earthquake - 5.5 - Caucasus region, Russia

    1 day ago WATCH

  • Flood - Nile Basin, Eastern Africa, Middle Africa and Northern Africa

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Yenisey Basin, S of Selenga River, Russia and Mongolia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Senegal Basin, Western Africa

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Magdalena Basin, SW of Magdalena River, Colombia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Yaqui Basin, E of Yaqui River, Mexico

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - NW of Karachi, Baluchistan and Sind, Pakistan

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Limpopo Basin, NW of Limpopo River, Botswana and South Africa

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - S of Tecuala, Nayarit, Mexico

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Balancan, Tabasco, Mexico

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - SE of San Carlos, Río San Juan, Nicaragua

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - E of Tucupita, Delta Amacuro, Venezuela

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Orinoco Basin, Orinoco and Apure Rivers, Colombia and Venezuela

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Cuyuni Basin, Brazil, Venezuela and Guyana

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - S of Guayaramerin, El Beni, Bolivia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - W of Mabaruma, Barima-Waini, Guyana

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Raba, Nusa Tenggara Barat, Indonesia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - W of Parnaiba, Piauí, Brazil

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Tarakan, Kalimantan Timur, Indonesia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Orange Basin, E of Fish River, Botswana and South Africa

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Kapuas Basin, Kapuas and Mahakam Rivers, Indonesia and Malaysia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - SE of Pekanbaru, Jambi, Riau and Sumatera Barat, Indonesia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Murray Basin, Murray, Darling and Murrumbidgee Rivers, Australia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - E of Zhosaly, Qyzylorda, Kazakhstan

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - NW of Chattogram, Chittagong, Bangladesh

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Indus Basin, India and Pakistan

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Yellow River Basin, China

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Hyderabad, Baluchistan, Punjab and Sind, Pakistan

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Irrawaddy Basin, Bangladesh and Myanmar

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Chao Phraya Basin, Thailand

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - E of Baoding, North China

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Brahmaputra Basin, Eastern Asia, Southern Asia and South-eastern Asia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Yalu River Basin, China, South Korea and North Korea

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Mekong Basin, Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - SE of Karachi, Sind, Pakistan

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Yangtze Basin, NE of Yangtze River, China

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Niger Basin, Niger and Bani Rivers, Burkina Faso and Mali

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Chennai, Eastern India

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Ogooue Basin, Middle Africa

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Vam Co Basin, N of Vam Co River, Cambodia and Vietnam

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Ganges Basin, India and Bangladesh

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Irrawaddy Basin, NE of Irrawaddy River, Myanmar and Thailand

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Shatt Al Arab Basin, Iran, Iraq and Saudi Arabia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Hingol Basin, NW of Hingol River, Iran and Pakistan

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Chad Basin, Middle Africa and Western Africa

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Lake Turkana Basin, Ethiopia and Kenya

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - S of Tamale, Northern, Ghana

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - N of Saint-Louis, Saint-Louis, Mauritania

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Bolama, Bolama, Guinea-Bissau

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Niger Basin, Nigeria

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Congo Basin, Tanzania

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Chad Basin, Chad

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - NE of Adigrat, Tigray, Ethiopia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Alexandria, Al Iskandariyah, Egypt

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - NW of Bandar Lampung, Lampung, Indonesia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - N of Lamu, Lamu, Kenya

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Amur Basin, China, Russia and Mongolia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Flood - Zambezi Basin, Mozambique and Zimbabwe

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Extreme Heat - Southern Vietnam

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Storms - Vietnam

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Floods - Central Vietnam

    1 day ago INFORMATION

  • Storms - Eastern Malaysia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Extreme Heat - Queensland, Australia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Extreme Heat - Northern Territory, Australia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Extreme Heat - Western Australia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Volcano - Nevado del Ruiz, Colombia

    1 day ago WARNING

  • Volcano - San Miguel, El Salvador

    3 days ago ADVISORY

  • Drought - High Plains United States

    2 days ago WARNING

  • Drought - Northwestern United States

    2 days ago WARNING

  • Drought - Southwestern United States

    2 days ago WARNING

  • Drought - Hawaii, United States

    2 days ago WARNING

  • Drought - Federated States of Micronesia

    2 days ago WARNING

  • Drinking Water - SE of Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, Canada

    2 days ago ADVISORY

  • Volcano - Villarrica, Chile

    3 days ago ADVISORY

  • Volcano - Mauna Loa, United States

    5 days ago ADVISORY

  • Drought - Tuvalu

    3 days ago WARNING

  • Volcano - Taal, Philippines

    4 days ago WARNING

  • Drought - South Korea

    4 days ago WARNING

  • Cholera - Haiti

    1 week ago WARNING

  • Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Europe

    7 months ago WARNING

  • Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Africa

    7 months ago WARNING

  • Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Middle East

    7 months ago WARNING

  • Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) - North America

    7 months ago WARNING

  • Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Asia Pacific

    7 months ago WARNING

  • Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Latin America/Caribbean

    7 months ago WARNING

  • Ebola Virus - Uganda

    1 month ago WARNING

  • Ebola Virus - Eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo

    3 months ago WARNING

  • Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Hawaii

    7 months ago WARNING

April 3, 2013

Coastal populations everywhere are at risk from tsunami waves that can strike quickly with little warning.

On February 06, 2013 an 8.0-magnitude undersea earthquake struck roughly 20 miles of the coast of the Santa Cruz group in Temotu Province, Solomon Islands. Minutes later a tsunami warning was issued and, quickly following, villages in the Temotu province were hit by a tsunami wave. The wave destroyed homes and food crops, leaving 10 dead and thousands affected. Numerous aftershocks followed, along with poor weather and heavy rain. Water supplies, airstrips, and wharves were damaged – the possibility of landslides increased and conditions hampered the movement of humanitarian aid. The Solomon Islands government declared the Temotu province a disaster area.

The Santa Cruz tsunami is an example of a rapid onset hazard: the population was struck quickly and received very little or no warning. The nature of this type of impact requires communities to work towards hazard preparedness and mitigation that increases awareness of how quickly a disaster can develop and how to respond when an event occurs. This focus is particularly relevant as increasing urban populations in coastal areas expose higher numbers of people to the dangers of rapid onset hazards.

It is important to remember that if you are near the coast and feel the ground shake, see the ocean water receding, or hear a loud roar, you should head to high ground immediately. A locally generated tsunami could arrive within minutes. Either run up hills and away from the coastlines, or if the coastal area is flat, perform a vertical evacuation. A vertical evacuation means finding a tall but strong structure, such as a high-rise building, and try to reach the fifth floor. On land, going up to 70 feet (about 23 meters) above sea level is usually sufficient.

However, not all tsunamis are locally generated and once a hazard (like an undersea earthquake) is detected, estimates can be made about the arrival of the first tsunami waves. The amount of time before the arrival depends on the distance between any location and the epicenter of the event causing the tsunami. The farther a location is from the epicenter, the longer it takes for the waves to arrive.  The waves travel at about jet speed (up to 500 miles/hour) in the open ocean. Tsunami travel time can vary from a few minutes up to 14-15 hours or more.

Pacific Disaster Center (PDC) offers a wide range of information that can be used to help prepare for a tsunami, including tools for risk assessment and early warning. General information is available on the PDC website, and the PDC DisasterAWARE platform provides comprehensive hazard monitoring available to the public through the Global Hazards Atlas. The PDC mobile app, Disaster Alert, provides near real-time hazard notification for iOS or Android devices. (See download information below.)

Additionally, PDC offers informational kits that help promote tsunami awareness and preparedness. The kits can include maps, booklets, pamphlets, posters, and presentation materials, as well as instructions for use along with strategies for the implementation of tsunami awareness outreach programs. Tsunami awareness kits can be customized upon request for any coastal location or audience, and made available in a variety of formats. To view a selection of tsunami resources available via the web, visit: http://tap.pdc.org. For more information on customized tsunami awareness kits, address your request to info@pdc.org.

For more about the Santa Cruz, Solomon Islands Tsunami:
• For documents and reports, see Pacific Disaster Net (PDN).
• Additional reports and links are found at the GLIDE site.

For more about DisasterAWARE:
• For details, see the DisasterAWARE documentation.
• Do-it-yourself training to become a proficient user of Atlas.
• Watch the new DMRS video on YouTube.

To keep yourself up-to-the-minute about hazards and disasters:
• Download the free PDC Disaster Alert mobile app for your iOS and Android devices,
• Follow us on Twitter and Facebook (/DisasterAWARE), and
• Use PDC’s Global Hazards Atlas from any computer.

For the latest Weather and Disaster News, use the PDC Weather Wall.
While you are thinking of hazards, think of preparedness. PDC provides disaster preparedness information, including printable instructions for assembling a Disaster Supply Kit and rehearsing a Family Disaster Plan.

About PDC:
Pacific Disaster Center (PDC) envisions a safer, more secure world—where populations live in safer, more disaster-resilient communities informed by science and technology, and equipped with sound decision support tools. To help make that vision a reality, PDC is dedicated to supporting disaster risk reduction (DRR) efforts by providing evidence-based information and applications to the public and disaster managers worldwide. PDC, a program managed by the University of Hawai‘i, was established by the U.S. government in 1996.

 

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