Tsunami Warning for California, Oregon

CLICK HERE FOR UPDATED NEWS ON THIS STORY

The latest tsunami warning message from the West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center (2:30 a.m. PST, and first posted by the National Weather Service) includes expected first arrival times for several locations along the coast: Crescent City (Del Norte County): 7:23 a.m. San Francisco: 8:08 a.m. (Here’s the complete list of first arrival times.)

The warning center has noted that maximum amplitude of any quake-driven waves will arrive two to three hours after the first arrival times.

The center also released an exhaustive list of coastal locations and projected tsunami amplitudes. According to my reading of the list possible sea-level increases range from about 8 feet at Crescent City to 2 to 3 feet along the Sonoma, Marin, San Francisco, and San Mateo coasts.

Earlier: 1:45 a.m. PST message from the West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center: A tsunami warning is now in effect from Point Concepcion, on the lower Central California coast, all the way to the mouth of the Columbia River on the Oregon-Washington coast. Advisory from West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center

Here’s the boilerplate language from the Tsunami Warning Center on what the warning means:

A Tsunami Warning means that 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. A tsunami has been recorded.

And here’s another detail to take note of: the tsunami danger will remain after the first impulse arrives:

TSUNAMI AMPLITUDES ARE EXPECTED TO PEAK TWO TO THREE HOURS AFTER INITIAL ARRIVAL ALONG THE NORTH AMERICAN COAST. 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.

Other tsunami resources:

City of San Francisco tsunami preparedness site

Tsunami Inundation Maps from the California Department of Conservation. Note: These maps show areas that are prone to inundation, not areas expected to be inundated by any tsunami that appears in the wake of Japan’s Great 2011 Earthquake.

Related

  • Arul

    Thanks. The inundation maps are a great resource, i’m finally at ease after looking at them.

    • Dan Brekke

      Cool — glad they help!

  • john

    im in salinas california in the monterey county.. i am just wondering if i am safe.. im sure we are, but just making sure..

  • Sarah James

    I Live In Los Angeles, CA an d Just Wonerinqq If We Were Gonna Be Okay,,,and Have Family In LonqqBeach Will They Be Okay ????
    Please Reply Soon A sPossible

  • http://www.kqednews.org Ian Hill

    Hi Sarah, you’ll want to stay updated with the National Weather Service website. As of right now, here’s what it says about Southern California:
    …THE TSUNAMI ADVISORY CONTINUES IN EFFECT FOR THE COASTAL
    AREAS OF CALIFORNIA FROM THE CALIFORNIA-MEXICO BORDER TO
    POINT CONCEPCION CALIFORNIA…
    An advisory is not as serious as a warning:
    - PERSONS IN TSUNAMI ADVISORY COASTAL AREAS SHOULD MOVE OUT OF
    THE WATER… OFF THE BEACH AND OUT OF HARBORS AND MARINAS.

  • alex

    please i need to know whats going on with sandiego county and oceanside and vista ca…i cant find nothing i leave in nc and my family is out there and cant find much on it please i need info tnx

  • Wil

    Planned on paddling Bodega Bat, Tomales Bay and Russian River this weekend. Is it safe?

  • Nimii

    Hi…We and our friends are planning a trip with our family to visit Disneyland tomorrow. We are from Houston, TX. We are put up in Anaheim. I just wanted to know if there’s any news around and about this location that should change our minds. I am trying to look at ther advisory and nothing looks too scary right now. But I am just not sure what to do???

    • Jon Brooks

      You should be fine. No more alerts here.

Author

Dan Brekke

Dan Brekke (Twitter: @danbrekke) has worked in media ever since Nixon's first term, when newspapers were still using hot type. He had moved on to online news by the time Bill Clinton met Monica Lewinsky. He's been at KQED since 2007, is an enthusiastic practitioner of radio and online journalism and will talk to you about absolutely anything. Reach Dan Brekke at dbrekke@kqed.org.

Sponsored by

Become a KQED sponsor