Visitors and residents alike were woken up this morning at 6 am to the Civil Defense Sirens sounding statewide in Hawaii.
Tsunami waves are headed towards the Hawaiian Islands that could cause widespread damage along coastlines of all islands in the state. Urgent action should be taken to protect lives and property.
Coastal residents are urged to evacuate. Follow civil defense instructions.
Honolulu airport remains open, but arriving travelers may not be able to leave the airport starting around 10.00am.
Waikiki is in the evacuation zone, but this does not apply to higher levels (3 levels or up) in hotel or other buildings.
The first waves will reach Hilo, Hawaii at 11:05 AM
The first waves will reach Kahului, Maui at 11:26 AM
The first waves will reach Honolulu at 11:37 AM
The first waves will reach Nawiliwili, Kauai at 11:42 AM
A tsunami is a series of long ocean waves. Each individual wave crest can last five to 15 minutes or more and extensively flood coastal areas. The danger can continue for many hours after the initial wave as subsequent waves arrive. Tsunami wave heights cannot be predicted and the first wave may not be the largest.
Victor Sardina of the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center predicts the tsunami would be a series of big waves, rather than a wall of water. Charles McCreery, director of the center, says the tsunami will be “a lot like a fast high tide” and could pose dangers for several hours after the initial waves hit.
Tsunami waves efficiently wrap around islands. All shores are at risk no matter which direction they face. The trough of a tsunami waves may temporarily expose the sea floor but the area will quickly flood again. Extremely strong and unusual near shore currents can accompany a tsunami. Debris picked up and carried by a tsunami amplifies its destructive power. Simultaneous high tides or high surf can significantly increase the tsunami hazard.
The privately managed Hawaii Tourism Association is available to answer questions and concerns. Phone contact 808-566-9900 .
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