Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Tsunami Strikes Solomon Islands (Updated Feb. 6, 2013))

From USA Today:
A powerful earthquake off the Solomon Islands generated a tsunami of up to 1.5 meters (about 5 feet) that damaged dozens of homes in the South Pacific island chain Wednesday, but authorities canceled warnings for tsunamis on more distant coasts.Solomons officials reported two 1.5-meter (4 foot, 11-inch) waves hit the western side of Santa Cruz Island, damaging around 50 homes and properties, said George Herming, a spokesman for the prime minister. There were no reports of injuries or deaths. Villagers were heading for higher ground as a precaution, Herming said.

The tsunami formed after an 8.0-magnitude earthquake near Lata on Santa Cruz in Temotu province, the easternmost province of the Solomons, about a 3-hour flight from the capital, Honiara. The region has a population of around 30,000 people.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said a tsunami of about a meter (3 feet) was measured in Lata wharf, in the Solomon Islands. The center said an 11-centimeter (4.3-inch) wave was observed in neighboring Vanuatu.
Updated: Reuters is reporting at least 5 dead as a result of the tsunami, with perhaps more as additional villages are checked.

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