Friday, March 11, 2011

Tsunami damage

This great earthquake and ensuing tsunami took 128 lives (tsunami 113, earthquake 15), and caused about $311 million in property loss. Earthquake effects were heavy in many towns, including Anchorage, Chitina, Glennallen, Homer, Hope, Kasilof, Kenai, Kodiak, Moose Pass, Portage, Seldovia, Seward, Sterling, Valdez, Wasilla, and Whittier.

Anchorage, about 120 kilometers northwest of the epicenter, sustained the most severe damage to property. About 30 blocks of dwellings and commercial buildings were damaged or destroyed in the downtown area. The J.C. Penny Company building was damaged beyond repair; the Four Seasons apartment building, a new six-story structure, collapsed; and many other multistory buildings were damaged heavily. The schools in Anchorage were almost devastated. The Government Hill Grade School, sitting astride a huge landslide, was almost a total loss. Anchorage High School and Denali Grade School were damaged severely. Duration of the shock was estimated at 3 minutes.

This shock generated a tsunami that devasted many towns along the Gulf of Alaska, and left serious damage at Alberni and Port Alberni, Canada, along the West Coast of the United States (15 killed), and in Hawaii. The maximum wave height recorded was 67 meters at Valdez Inlet. Seiche action in rivers, lakes, bayous, and protected harbors and waterways along the Gulf Coast of Louisiana and Texas caused minor damage. It was also recorded on tide gages in Cuba and Puerto Rico.

Tsunami damage at Kodiak, Alaska, following the March 27, 1964 Good Friday earthquake.

Tsunami damageNOAA photos and slides are in the public domain and CANNOT be copyrighted. There is no fee for downloading any images on the NOAA Photo Library.

Credit requested to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration / Department of Commerce. Where a photographer is noted, please credit the photographer and his/her affiliated organization as well.

This file is a work of an employee of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, taken or made during the course of the person's official duties. As a work of the U.S. federal government, the file is in the public domain.

Generally speaking, works created by U.S. Government employees are not eligible for copyright protection in the United States. See Circular 1 "COPYRIGHT BASICS" PDF from the U.S. Copyright Office.

An International Tsunami Survey Team (ITST) studying the effects of the December 26 tsunami on Indonesia's island of Sumatra documented wave heights of 20 to 30 m (65 to 100 ft) at the island's northwest end and found evidence suggesting that wave heights may have ranged from 15 to 30 m (50 to 100 ft) along a 100-km (60-mi) stretch of the northwest coast. These wave heights are higher than those predicted by computer models made soon after the earthquake that triggered the tsunami. "Groundtruthing" the models, which are used to forecast tsunamis for early-warning systems and long-term planning efforts, was one of the main goals of the scientific survey.

Tsunami damageA mosque is left standing amid the rubble in Banda Aceh. Several mosques survived and may have been saved by the open ground floor that is part of their design. The tsunami waves reached the middle of the second floor. Photograph by Guy Gelfenbaum, USGS.

Copyrights and Credits: USGS authored or produced data and information are considered to be in the U.S. public domain. Use of appropriate byline / photo / image credit is requested.

No comments:

Post a Comment