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*NO* tsunami expected on US/Canadian west coasts after major Alaskan quake

wcso sheriff office emergency management vehicle 2016-08-08
WCSO Emergency Management vehicle (August 8, 2016). Photo: My Ferndale News

A M7.5 earthquake that occurred about 1:55pm Pacific Daylight Time today, October 19th, located 55 miles southeast of Sand Point, Alaska, at a depth of 25 miles was the cause of tsunami warnings in the immediate areas in Alaska. But officials said not to expect a tsunami along the west coasts of Canada and the lower United States.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center issued the following statement today at 3:05pm.

AN EARTHQUAKE WITH A PRELIMINARY MAGNITUDE OF 7.5 OCCURRED SOUTH OF ALASKA AT 2055 UTC ON MONDAY OCTOBER 19 2020. NOTE THAT THE MAGNITUDE HAS BEEN UPDATED.

BASED ON ALL AVAILABLE DATA… THE TSUNAMI THREAT FROM THIS EARTHQUAKE HAS NOW PASSED.

TSUNAMI THREAT FORECAST…UPDATED

THERE IS NO LONGER A TSUNAMI THREAT FROM THIS EARTHQUAKE, EXCEPT FOR THE IMMEDIATE EPICENTRAL AREA.

RECOMMENDED ACTIONS

REMAIN OBSERVANT AND EXERCISE NORMAL CAUTION NEAR THE SEA. OTHERWISE… NO ACTION IS REQUIRED.

POTENTIAL IMPACTS

MINOR SEA LEVEL FLUCTUATIONS MAY OCCUR IN SOME COASTAL AREAS NEAR THE EARTHQUAKE OVER THE NEXT FEW HOURS.

The time for a tsunami from that quake to reach the coast of Washington state would have been over 3 hours (after 5pm) according to the following graphic.

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Tsunami estimated travel times (October 19, 2020). Source: U.S. National Tsunami Warning Center

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