Last updated

The 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami at Ao Nang, Krabi Province, Thailand 2004-tsunami.jpg
The 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami at Ao Nang, Krabi Province, Thailand
3D tsunami animation

A tsunami ( /(t)sˈnɑːmi,(t)sʊˈ-/ (t)soo-NAH-mee, (t)suu-; [1] [2] [3] [4] from Japanese : 津波, lit. 'harbour wave', [5] pronounced [tsɯnami] ) is a series of waves in a water body caused by the displacement of a large volume of water, generally in an ocean or a large lake. Earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and other underwater explosions (including detonations, landslides, glacier calvings, meteorite impacts and other disturbances) above or below water all have the potential to generate a tsunami. [6] Unlike normal ocean waves, which are generated by wind, or tides, which are in turn generated by the gravitational pull of the Moon and the Sun, a tsunami is generated by the displacement of water from a large event.


Tsunami waves do not resemble normal undersea currents or sea waves because their wavelength is far longer. [7] Rather than appearing as a breaking wave, a tsunami may instead initially resemble a rapidly rising tide. [8] For this reason, it is often referred to as a tidal wave, [9] although this usage is not favoured by the scientific community because it might give the false impression of a causal relationship between tides and tsunamis. [10] Tsunamis generally consist of a series of waves, with periods ranging from minutes to hours, arriving in a so-called "wave train". [11] Wave heights of tens of metres can be generated by large events. Although the impact of tsunamis is limited to coastal areas, their destructive power can be enormous, and they can affect entire ocean basins. The 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami was among the deadliest natural disasters in human history, with at least 230,000 people killed or missing in 14 countries bordering the Indian Ocean.

The Ancient Greek historian Thucydides suggested in his 5th century BC History of the Peloponnesian War that tsunamis were related to submarine earthquakes, [12] [13] but the understanding of tsunamis remained slim until the 20th century, and much remains unknown. Major areas of current research include determining why some large earthquakes do not generate tsunamis while other smaller ones do. This ongoing research is designed to help accurately forecast the passage of tsunamis across oceans as well as how tsunami waves interact with shorelines.



Tsunami (Chinese characters).svg
"Tsunami" in kanji
Calculated travel time map for the 1964 Alaska tsunami (in hours) Calculated Travel Time Map for 1964 Alaska Tsunami.jpg
Calculated travel time map for the 1964 Alaska tsunami (in hours)

Drawbacks can serve as a brief warning. People who observe drawback (many survivors report an accompanying sucking sound) can survive only if they immediately run for high ground or seek the upper floors of nearby buildings.

In 2004, ten-year-old Tilly Smith of Surrey, England, was on Maikhao beach in Phuket, Thailand with her parents and sister, and having learned about tsunamis recently in school, told her family that a tsunami might be imminent. Her parents warned others minutes before the wave arrived, saving dozens of lives. She credited her geography teacher, Andrew Kearney.

In the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami drawback was not reported on the African coast or any other east-facing coasts that it reached. This was because the initial wave moved downwards on the eastern side of the megathrust and upwards on the western side. The western pulse hit coastal Africa and other western areas.

A tsunami cannot be precisely predicted, even if the magnitude and location of an earthquake is known. Geologists, oceanographers, and seismologists analyse each earthquake and based on many factors may or may not issue a tsunami warning. However, there are some warning signs of an impending tsunami, and automated systems can provide warnings immediately after an earthquake in time to save lives. One of the most successful systems uses bottom pressure sensors, attached to buoys, which constantly monitor the pressure of the overlying water column.

Regions with a high tsunami risk typically use tsunami warning systems to warn the population before the wave reaches land. On the west coast of the United States, which is prone to tsunamis from the Pacific Ocean, warning signs indicate evacuation routes. In Japan, the populace is well-educated about earthquakes and tsunamis, and along Japanese shorelines, tsunami warning signs remind people of the natural hazards along with a network of warning sirens, typically at the top of the cliffs of surrounding hills. [73]

The Pacific Tsunami Warning System is based in Honolulu, Hawaiʻi. It monitors Pacific Ocean seismic activity. A sufficiently large earthquake magnitude and other information triggers a tsunami warning. While the subduction zones around the Pacific are seismically active, not all earthquakes generate a tsunami. Computers assist in analysing the tsunami risk of every earthquake that occurs in the Pacific Ocean and the adjoining land masses.

As a direct result of the Indian Ocean tsunami, a re-appraisal of the tsunami threat for all coastal areas is being undertaken by national governments and the United Nations Disaster Mitigation Committee. A tsunami warning system is being installed in the Indian Ocean.

One of the deep water buoys used in the DART tsunami warning system Dart tsunamicover.jpg
One of the deep water buoys used in the DART tsunami warning system

Computer models can predict tsunami arrival, usually within minutes of the arrival time. Bottom pressure sensors can relay information in real time. Based on these pressure readings and other seismic information and the seafloor's shape (bathymetry) and coastal topography, the models estimate the amplitude and surge height of the approaching tsunami. All Pacific Rim countries collaborate in the Tsunami Warning System and most regularly practise evacuation and other procedures. In Japan, such preparation is mandatory for government, local authorities, emergency services and the population.

Along the United States west coast, in addition to sirens, warnings are sent on television and radio via the National Weather Service, using the Emergency Alert System.

Possible animal reaction

Some zoologists hypothesise that some animal species have an ability to sense subsonic Rayleigh waves from an earthquake or a tsunami. If correct, monitoring their behaviour could provide advance warning of earthquakes and tsunamis. However, the evidence is controversial and is not widely accepted. There are unsubstantiated claims about the Lisbon quake that some animals escaped to higher ground, while many other animals in the same areas drowned. The phenomenon was also noted by media sources in Sri Lanka in the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. [74] [75] It is possible that certain animals (e.g., elephants) may have heard the sounds of the tsunami as it approached the coast. The elephants' reaction was to move away from the approaching noise. By contrast, some humans went to the shore to investigate and many drowned as a result.


A seawall at Tsu, Mie Prefecture in Japan Tsunami wall.jpg
A seawall at Tsu, Mie Prefecture in Japan

In some tsunami-prone countries, earthquake engineering measures have been taken to reduce the damage caused onshore.

Japan, where tsunami science and response measures first began following a disaster in 1896, has produced ever-more elaborate countermeasures and response plans. [76] The country has built many tsunami walls of up to 12 metres (39 ft) high to protect populated coastal areas. Other localities have built floodgates of up to 15.5 metres (51 ft) high and channels to redirect the water from an incoming tsunami. However, their effectiveness has been questioned, as tsunamis often overtop the barriers.

The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster was directly triggered by the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, when waves exceeded the height of the plant's sea wall. [77] Iwate Prefecture, which is an area at high risk from tsunami, had tsunami barriers walls (Taro sea wall) totalling 25 kilometres (16 mi) long at coastal towns. The 2011 tsunami toppled more than 50% of the walls and caused catastrophic damage. [78]

The Okushiri, Hokkaidō tsunami, which struck within two to five minutes of the earthquake on July 12, 1993, created waves 30 metres (100 ft) tall—as high as a 10-storey building. The port town of Aonae was completely surrounded by a tsunami wall, but the waves washed right over the wall and destroyed all the wood-framed structures in the area. The wall may have succeeded in slowing down and moderating the height of the tsunami, but it did not prevent major destruction and loss of life. [79]

See also


  1. Wells, John C. (1990). Longman pronunciation dictionary. Harlow, England: Longman. p. 736. ISBN   978-0-582-05383-0. Entry: "tsunami"
  2. "tsunami". Macmillan Dictionary . Retrieved 2018-11-23.
  3. "tsunami". Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary . Retrieved 19 August 2019.
  4. "tsunami". Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English . Longman . Retrieved 19 August 2019.
  5. "Tsunami Terminology". NOAA. Archived from the original on 2011-02-25. Retrieved 2010-07-15.
  6. Barbara Ferreira (April 17, 2011). "When icebergs capsize, tsunamis may ensue". Nature . Archived from the original on 2011-11-04. Retrieved 2011-04-27.
  7. "NASA Finds Japan Tsunami Waves Merged, Doubling Power". Jet Propulsion Laboratory . Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  8. "Tsunami 101". University of Washington. Retrieved 1 December 2018.
  9. "Definition of Tidal Wave".
  10. "What does "tsunami" mean?". Earth and Space Sciences, University of Washington. Retrieved 1 December 2018.
  11. Fradin, Judith Bloom and Dennis Brindell (2008). Witness to Disaster: Tsunamis. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society. pp. 42–43. Archived from the original on 2012-04-06.
  12. 1 2 Thucydides: “A History of the Peloponnesian War”, 3.89.1–4
  13. 1 2 3 Smid, T. C. (April 1970). 'Tsunamis' in Greek Literature. Vol. 17 (2nd ed.). pp. 100–104.{{cite book}}: |work= ignored (help)
  14. [a. Jap. tsunami, tunami, f. tsu harbour + nami waves.—Oxford English Dictionary]
  15. "Definition of Tidal Wave" . Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  16. "Tidal", The American Heritage Stedman's Medical Dictionary. Houghton Mifflin Company. 11 November 2008.Dictionary.reference.com
  17. -al. (n.d.). Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1). Retrieved November 11, 2008, Dictionary.reference.com
  18. "Forty Feet High and It Kills!" Hawaii Five-O. Writ. Robert C. Dennis and Edward J. Lakso. Dir. Michael O'Herlihy. CBS, 8 Oct. 1969. Television.
  19. "Seismic Sea Wave – Tsunami Glossary" . Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  20. "tsunamis" . Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  21. postcode=3001, corporateName=Bureau of Meteorology; address=GPO Box 1289, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. "Joint Australian Tsunami Warning Centre" . Retrieved 3 November 2016.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link) CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  22. Svennevig, Kristian; Hermanns, Reginald L.; Keiding, Marie; Binder, Daniel; Citterio, Michelle; Dahl-Jensen, Trine; Mertl, Stefan; Sørensen, Erik Vest; Voss, Peter H. (23 July 2022). "A large frozen debris avalanche entraining warming permafrost ground—the June 2021 Assapaat landslide, West Greenland". Landslides. Springer Link. 19 (11): 2549–2567. Bibcode:2022Lands..19.2549S. doi: 10.1007/s10346-022-01922-7 .
  23. "International Team Studies Tsunami Deposits in Japan to Improve Understanding and Mitigation of Tsunami Hazards | U.S. Geological Survey". www.usgs.gov. Retrieved 2024-01-31.
  24. Indian Ocean tsunami anniversary: Memorial events held 26 December 2014, BBC News
  25. The 10 most destructive tsunamis in history Archived 2013-12-04 at the Wayback Machine , Australian Geographic, March 16, 2011.
  26. Thucydides: “A History of the Peloponnesian War”, 3.89.5
  27. Kelly, Gavin (2004). "Ammianus and the Great Tsunami". The Journal of Roman Studies. 94 (141): 141–167. doi:10.2307/4135013. hdl: 20.500.11820/635a4807-14c9-4044-9caa-8f8e3005cb24 . JSTOR   4135013. S2CID   160152988.
  28. Stanley, Jean-Daniel & Jorstad, Thomas F. (2005), "The 365 A.D. Tsunami Destruction of Alexandria, Egypt: Erosion, Deformation of Strata and Introduction of Allochthonous Material Archived 2017-05-25 at the Wayback Machine "
  29. Haugen, K; Lovholt, F; Harbitz, C (2005). "Fundamental mechanisms for tsunami generation by submarine mass flows in idealised geometries". Marine and Petroleum Geology . 22 (1–2): 209–217. Bibcode:2005MarPG..22..209H. doi:10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2004.10.016.
  30. "Tsunami Locations & Occurrences". National Weather Service. Retrieved 16 January 2022.
  31. Krieger, Lisa M. (15 January 2022). "Volcanic tsunamis: Why they are so difficult to predict". The Mercury News. Retrieved 16 January 2022.
  32. "Tsunamis". National Geographic. Archived from the original on April 12, 2021. Retrieved 16 January 2022.
  33. Margaritondo, G (2005). "Explaining the physics of tsunamis to undergraduate and non-physics students" (PDF). European Journal of Physics. 26 (3): 401–407. Bibcode:2005EJPh...26..401M. doi:10.1088/0143-0807/26/3/007. S2CID   7512603. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2019-02-19.
  34. Voit, S.S (1987). "Tsunamis". Annual Review of Fluid Mechanics. 19 (1): 217–236. Bibcode:1987AnRFM..19..217V. doi:10.1146/annurev.fl.19.010187.001245.
  35. Tia Ghose (2014). "Are Ocean Asteroid Impacts Really a Serious Threat?".
  36. "How do earthquakes generate tsunamis?". University of Washington. Archived from the original on 2007-02-03.
  37. Lynnes, C. S.; Lay, T. (1988), "Source Process of the Great 1977 Sumba Earthquake" (PDF), Geophysical Research Letters, American Geophysical Union, 93 (B11): 13, 407–13, 420, Bibcode:1988JGR....9313407L, doi:10.1029/JB093iB11p13407
  38. Kanamori H. (1971). "Seismological evidence for a lithospheric normal faulting – the Sanriku earthquake of 1933". Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors. 4 (4): 298–300. Bibcode:1971PEPI....4..289K. doi:10.1016/0031-9201(71)90013-6.
  39. Facts and figures: how tsunamis form Archived 2013-11-05 at the Wayback Machine , Australian Geographic, March 18, 2011.
  40. George Pararas-Carayannis (1999). "The Mega-Tsunami of July 9, 1958 in Lituya Bay, Alaska" . Retrieved 2014-02-27.
  41. "alaskashipwreck.com Alaska Shipwrecks (B)".
  42. "alaskashipwreck.com Alaska Shipwrecks (S)".
  43. "Dickson, Ian, "60 Years Ago: The 1958 Earthquake and Lituya Bay Megatsunami," University of Alaska Fairbanks Alaska Earthquake Center, July 13, 2018 Retrieved December 2, 2018".
  44. Petley, Dave (Professor) (2008-12-11). "The Vaiont (Vajont) landslide of 1963". The Landslide Blog. Archived from the original on 2013-12-06. Retrieved 2014-02-26.
  45. Duff, Mark (2013-10-10). "Italy Vajont anniversary: Night of the 'tsunami'". BBC News. Bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 2014-02-27.
  46. Pararas-Carayannis, George (2002). "Evaluation of the threat of mega tsunami generation from postulated massive slope failures of the island volcanoes on La Palma, Canary Islands, and on the island of Hawaii". Science of Tsunami Hazards. 20 (5): 251–277. Retrieved 7 September 2014.
  47. Paris, R. (2015). "Source mechanisms of volcanic tsunamis". Phil. Trans. R. Soc. 373 (2053). Bibcode:2015RSPTA.37340380P. doi: 10.1098/rsta.2014.0380 . PMID   26392617. S2CID   43187708.
  48. 1 2 Latter, J. H. (1981). "Tsunamis of volcanic origin: Summary of causes, with particular reference to Krakatoa, 1883". Bulletin Volcanologique. 44 (3): 467–490. Bibcode:1981BVol...44..467L. doi:10.1007/BF02600578. S2CID   129637214.
  49. Day, Simon J. (2015). "Volcanic Tsunamis". The Encyclopedia of Volcanoes. Elsevier. pp. 993–1009. doi:10.1016/B978-0-12-385938-9.00058-4. ISBN   9780123859389 . Retrieved 2022-03-21.
  50. Hayward, Matthew. W.; Whittaker, C. N.; Lane, E. M.; Power, W. L.; Popinet, S.; White, J.D.L. (2022). "Multilayer modelling of waves generated by explosive subaqueous volcanism". Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences . 22 (2): 617–637. Bibcode:2022NHESS..22..617H. doi: 10.5194/nhess-22-617-2022 .
  51. Battershill, L. (2021). "Numerical Simulations of a Fluidized Granular Flow Entry Into Water: Insights Into Modeling Tsunami Generation by Pyroclastic Density Currents". Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth . 126 (11). Bibcode:2021JGRB..12622855B. doi:10.1029/2021JB022855. S2CID   243837214. Archived from the original on June 3, 2023.
  52. 1 2 Monserrat, S.; Vilibíc, I.; Rabinovich, A. B. (2006). "Meteotsunamis: atmospherically induced destructive ocean waves in the tsunami frequency band". Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences. 6 (6): 1035–1051. Bibcode:2006NHESS...6.1035M. doi: 10.5194/nhess-6-1035-2006 .
  53. "The Hauraki Gulf Marine Park, Part 2". Inset to The New Zealand Herald . 3 March 2010. p. 9.
  54. Glasstone, Samuel; Dolan, Philip (1977). Shock effects of surface and subsurface bursts – The effects of nuclear weapons (third ed.). Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Defense; Energy Research and Development Administration.
  55. Earthsci.org, Tsunamis
  56. 1 2 "Life of a Tsunami". Western Coastal & Marine Geology. United States Geographical Survey. 22 October 2008. Retrieved 2009-09-09.
  57. Prof. Stephen A. Nelson (28 January 2009). "Tsunami". Tulane University. Retrieved 2009-09-09.
  58. "Tsunamis in the United States". WorldData.
  59. "Tsunamis in Mexico". WorldData.
  60. "Tsunamis in Japan". Worlddata.info.
  61. "Tsunamis in Taiwan". Worlddata.info.
  62. 1 2 Gusiakov V. "Tsunami Quantification: how we measure the overall size of tsunami (Review of tsunami intensity and magnitude scales)" (PDF). Retrieved 2009-10-18.
  63. Soloviev, S., & Go, N., 1974 (English transl. 1984), “Catalogue of tsunamis on the western shore of the Pacific Ocean”, Canadian Translation of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, No. 5077, (310 p).
  64. Center, National Geophysical Data. "NGDC/WDS Global Historical Tsunami Database – NCEI" . Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  65. Lekkas E.; Andreadakis E.; Kostaki I. & Kapourani E. (2013). "A Proposal for a New Integrated Tsunami Intensity Scale (ITIS-2012)". Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America. 103 (2B): 1493–1502. Bibcode:2013BuSSA.103.1493L. doi:10.1785/0120120099.
  66. Katsetsiadou, K.N., Andreadakis, E. and Lekkas, E., 2016. Tsunami intensity mapping: applying the integrated Tsunami Intensity Scale (ITIS2012) on Ishinomaki Bay Coast after the mega-tsunami of Tohoku, March 11, 2011. Research in Geophysics, 5(1).
  67. Abe K. (1995). Estimate of Tsunami Run-up Heights from Earthquake Magnitudes. Springer. ISBN   978-0-7923-3483-5 . Retrieved 2009-10-18.{{cite book}}: |work= ignored (help)
  68. "Tsunami Glossary".
  69. "Tsunami Terms".
  70. "津波について".
  71. "津波の高さの定義" . Retrieved 2012-02-19.[ dead link ]
  72. "Tsunami Amplitude".
  73. Chanson, H. (2010). "Tsunami Warning Signs on the Enshu Coast of Japan". Shore & Beach. 78 (1): 52–54. ISSN   0037-4237.
  74. Lambourne, Helen (2005-03-27). "Tsunami: Anatomy of a disaster". BBC.
  75. Kenneally, Christine (2004-12-30). "Surviving the Tsunami: What Sri Lanka's animals knew that humans didn't". Slate Magazine.
  76. "Journalist's Resource: Research for Reporting, from Harvard Shorenstein Center". Content.hks.harvard.edu. 2012-05-30. Retrieved 2012-06-12.
  77. Phillip Lipscy, Kenji Kushida, and Trevor Incerti. 2013. "The Fukushima Disaster and Japan’s Nuclear Plant Vulnerability in Comparative Perspective Archived 2013-10-29 at the Wayback Machine ". Environmental Science and Technology 47 (May), 6082–6088.
  78. Fukada, Takahiro (21 September 2011). "Iwate fisheries continue struggle to recover". The Japan Times . p. 3. Retrieved 2016-09-18.
  79. George Pararas-Carayannis. "The Earthquake and Tsunami of July 12, 1993 in the Sea of Japan/East Sea". www.drgeorgepc.com. Retrieved 2016-09-18.

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Earthquake</span> Sudden movement of the Earths crust

An earthquake – also called a quake, tremor, or temblor – is the shaking of the surface of Earth resulting from a sudden release of energy in the lithosphere that creates seismic waves. Earthquakes can range in intensity, from those that are so weak that they cannot be felt, to those violent enough to propel objects and people into the air, damage critical infrastructure, and wreak destruction across entire cities. The seismic activity of an area is the frequency, type, and size of earthquakes experienced over a particular time. The seismicity at a particular location in the Earth is the average rate of seismic energy release per unit volume. The word tremor is also used for non-earthquake seismic rumbling.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Natural disaster</span> Major adverse event resulting from natural processes of the Earth

A natural disaster is the highly harmful impact on a society or community following a natural hazard event. Some examples of natural hazard events include: flooding, drought, earthquake, tropical cyclone, lightning, tsunami, volcanic activity, wildfire. A natural disaster can cause loss of life or damage property, and typically leaves economic damage in its wake. The severity of the damage depends on the affected population's resilience and on the infrastructure available. Scholars have been saying that the term natural disaster is unsuitable and should be abandoned. Instead, the simpler term disaster could be used, while also specifying the category of hazard. A disaster is a result of a natural or human-made hazard impacting a vulnerable community. It is the combination of the hazard along with exposure of a vulnerable society that results in a disaster.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Megatsunami</span> Very large wave created by a large, sudden displacement of material into a body of water

A megatsunami is a very large wave created by a large, sudden displacement of material into a body of water.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Seiche</span> Standing wave in an enclosed or partially enclosed body of water

A seiche is a standing wave in an enclosed or partially enclosed body of water. Seiches and seiche-related phenomena have been observed on lakes, reservoirs, swimming pools, bays, harbors, caves, and seas. The key requirement for formation of a seiche is that the body of water be at least partially bounded, allowing the formation of the standing wave.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Cumbre Vieja</span> Volcano in La Palma, Spain

The Cumbre Vieja is an active volcanic ridge on the island of La Palma in the Canary Islands, Spain. The spine of Cumbre Vieja trends in an approximate north–south direction, comprising the southern half of La Palma, with both summit ridge and flanks pockmarked by dozens of craters and cones. The latest eruption began on 19 September 2021 in a forested area of Las Manchas locality known as Cabeza de Vaca. Voluminous lava flows quickly reached populated areas downslope, fanning out across settlements and banana plantations, destroying thousands of buildings and ultimately pouring over steep cliffs into the ocean to enlarge the island at several locations. The volcano went quiet on 13 December 2021, and on 25 December 2021, the local government declared the eruption to be over.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">1946 Aleutian Islands earthquake</span> Earthquake near the Aleutian Islands, Alaska

The 1946 Aleutian Islands earthquake occurred near the Aleutian Islands, Alaska on April 1, 1946. The shock measured 8.6, Mt 9.3 or 7.4. It had a maximum Mercalli intensity of VI (Strong). It resulted in 165–173 casualties and over US $26 million in damage. The seafloor along the fault was elevated, triggering a Pacific-wide tsunami with multiple destructive waves at heights ranging from 45–138 ft (14–42 m). The tsunami obliterated the Scotch Cap Lighthouse on Unimak Island, Alaska among others, and killed all five lighthouse keepers. Despite the destruction to the Aleutian Island Unimak, the tsunami had almost an imperceptible effect on the Alaskan mainland.

A meteotsunami or meteorological tsunami is a tsunami-like sea wave of meteorological origin. Meteotsunamis are generated when rapid changes in barometric pressure cause the displacement of a body of water. In contrast to "ordinary" impulse-type tsunami sources, a traveling atmospheric disturbance normally interacts with the ocean over a limited period of time. Tsunamis and meteotsunamis are otherwise similar enough that it can be difficult to distinguish one from the other, as in cases where there is a tsunami wave but there are no records of an earthquake, landslide, or volcanic eruption. Meteotsunamis, rather, are triggered due to extreme weather events including severe thunderstorms, squalls and storm fronts; all of which can quickly change atmospheric pressure. Meteotsunamis typically occur when severe weather is moving at the same speed and direction of the local wave action towards the coastline. The size of the wave is enhanced by coastal features such as shallow continental shelves, bays and inlets.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">2006 Pangandaran earthquake and tsunami</span> Destructive tsunami earthquake south of Java Island

An earthquake occurred on July 17, 2006 at 15:19:27 local time along a subduction zone off the coast of west and central Java, a large and densely populated island in the Indonesian archipelago. The shock had a moment magnitude of 7.7 and a maximum perceived intensity of IV (Light) in Jakarta, the capital and largest city of Indonesia. There were no direct effects of the earthquake's shaking due to its low intensity, and the large loss of life from the event was due to the resulting tsunami, which inundated a 300 km (190 mi) portion of the Java coast that had been unaffected by the earlier 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami that was off the coast of Sumatra. The July 2006 earthquake was also centered in the Indian Ocean, 180 kilometers (110 mi) from the coast of Java, and had a duration of more than three minutes.

Tsunamis affecting Britain and Ireland are extremely uncommon, and there have only been two confirmed cases in recorded history. Meteotsunamis are somewhat more common, especially on the southern coasts of England around the English and Bristol Channels.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Teletsunami</span> Massive tsunamis that strike a thousand kilometers or more from their source

A teletsunami is a tsunami that originates from a distant source, defined as more than 1,000 km (620 mi) away or three hours' travel from the area of interest, sometimes travelling across an ocean. All teletsunamis have been generated by major earthquakes such as the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, 1960 Valdivia earthquake, 1964 Alaska earthquake, 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake, 2011 Tohoku earthquake, and the 2021 South Sandwich Islands earthquakes.

A tsunami is a series of water waves caused by the displacement of a large volume within a body of water, often caused by earthquakes, or similar events. This may occur in lakes as well as oceans, presenting threats to both fishermen and shoreside inhabitants. Because they are generated by a near field source region, tsunamis generated in lakes and reservoirs result in a decreased amount of warning time.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">1993 Okushiri earthquake</span> Earthquake in Japan

The 1993 southwest-off Hokkaido earthquake or Okushiri earthquake occurred at 13:17:12 UTC on 12 July 1993 in the Sea of Japan near the island of Hokkaido. It had a magnitude of 7.7 on the moment magnitude scale and a maximum felt intensity of VIII (Severe) on the Mercalli intensity scale. It triggered a major tsunami that caused deaths on Hokkaidō and in southeastern Russia, with a total of 230 fatalities recorded. The island of Okushiri was hardest hit, with 165 casualties from the earthquake, the tsunami and a large landslide.

The 1901 Black Sea earthquakewas a 7.2 magnitude earthquake, the most powerful earthquake ever recorded in the Black Sea. The earthquake epicenter was located in the east of Cape Kaliakra, 30 kilometres (19 mi) off northeast coast of Bulgaria. The mainshock occurred at a depth of 15 km (9.3 mi) and generated a 4–5-metre (13–16 ft) high tsunami that devastated the coastal areas of Romania and Bulgaria. In Romania, the earthquake was felt not only throughout Northern Dobruja, but also in Oltenia and Muntenia, and even in southern Moldova.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Tsunami Warning, Education, and Research Act of 2014</span>

The Tsunami Warning, Education, and Research Act of 2014 is a bill that would authorize the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to spend $27 million a year for three years on their on-going tsunami warning and research programs.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">2016 Fukushima earthquake</span> Earthquake in Japan

The 2016 Fukushima earthquake struck Japan east-southeast of Namie, Fukushima Prefecture at 05:59 JST on November 22 with depth of 11.4 km (7.1 mi). The shock had a maximum intensity of VII (Very strong) on the Mercalli scale. The earthquake was initially reported as a 7.3 magnitude by Japan Meteorological Agency, and was later revised to 7.4, while the United States Geological Survey and GFZ Potsdam determined a magnitude of 6.9.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Cumbre Vieja tsunami hazard</span> Review of the topic

The island of La Palma in the Canary Islands is at risk of undergoing a large landslide, which could cause a tsunami in the Atlantic Ocean. Volcanic islands and volcanoes on land frequently undergo large landslides/collapses, which have been documented in Hawaii for example. A recent example is Anak Krakatau, which collapsed to cause the 2018 Sunda Strait tsunami.

On the morning of March 13, 1888, an explosion took place on Ritter Island, a small volcanic island in the Bismarck and Solomon Seas, between New Britain and Umboi Island. The explosion resulted in the collapse of most of the island and generated a tsunami with runups of up to 15 meters (49 ft) that caused damage more than 700 kilometers (430 mi) away and killed anywhere between 500 and 3,000 on neighbouring islands, including scientists and explorers. This event is the largest volcanic island sector collapse in recent history.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">1741 eruption of Oshima–Ōshima and the Kampo tsunami</span> Volcanic eruption and tsunami disaster off the coast of Hokkaido.

The devastating eruption of Oshima–Ōshima began on 18 August 1741 and ended on 1 May the next year. Eleven days into the eruption, the Kampo tsunami with estimated maximum heights of over 90 meters swept across neighboring islands in Japan and the Korean Peninsula.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Volcanic tsunami</span> Natural hazard

A volcanic tsunami, also called a volcanogenic tsunami, is a tsunami produced by volcanic phenomena. About 20–25% of all fatalities at volcanoes during the past 250 years have been caused by volcanic tsunamis. The most devastating volcanic tsunami in recorded history was that produced by the 1883 eruption of Krakatoa. The waves reached heights of 40 m (130 ft) and killed 36,000 people.


Further reading

Reporting Centers;

History & Research;

News & animations;