Saturday, February 27, 2010
10:49 PM by Problemfixer · 0 comments
An alert had been alarmed at Wellington. Waves up to 1.5 meters hit parts of New Zealand Sunday and a general tsunami alert for the entire coastline remains in place, the country’s Civil Defense service said. The tsunamis and warning follows a massive earthquake, registering 8.8 in magnitude, that struck Chile late Saturday, killing at least 214 people, according to official reports.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center Saturday had warned of possible “widespread damage” from waves generated by Chile’s killer quake. New Zealand emergency services and disaster relief forces were scrambled and people in some coastal areas were evacuated although toward midday officials were downplaying initial fears.
“We can say it’s unlikely to be very destructive,” Ken Gledhill of the Institute of Geological and Nuclear Science (GNS) told Television New Zealand. “It is expected that the greatest wave heights will occur between six and 12 hours after the initial arrivals,” the Ministry of Civil Defense and Emergency Management said in a statement.
The first tsunami hit New Zealand in the Chatham Islands group, around 500 miles east of the South Island, at around 7:30 a.m. local time. Civil Defense said the first wave was only around 30 centimeters high, but the officials said waves as high as 1.5 meters struck in the next few hours.
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