Ask An Expert: Who Issues Tsunami Warnings?


There are two ways that you should know
about tsunamis. There’s the one you feel, the earthquake that you feel
underneath your feet and then there’s the one, it’s a large earthquake that
happens somewhere else. It could be in Alaska, it could be in Japan,
and that one you’re not gonna feel. So I’ll cover both of those. The first, if
there’s an earthquake here you’re gonna know that tsunami’s coming based off of
that earthquake. If it’s a really large earthquake that lasts a long time, there’s
gonna be no question in your mind. If it’s anything less than that, really
short earthquake, okay maybe not something you need to
worry about. But if you’re anywhere in between, you know, go ahead and
exercise your evacuation plan and then get information afterwards once
you’re in a safe place. However, if it’s far away, the National Tsunami Warning Center in Alaska will be watching earthquakes, determining if there’s a threat and then
sending out messages to us here on the West Coast and then here at the National
Weather Service we’ll then forward that message on to everybody here locally; to
emergency managers, to the public, to everybody. So you’ll get messages through your phone, you may hear sirens go off, you’ll have reverse calling from the
Sheriff’s Office. There’s all sorts of systems that’ll go that you’ll start to
see. You’ll see the warning on TV. So there’s a lot of different ways to
get the information. We also recommend having a NOAA weather radio because then you have an alarm literally in your house. So those are the best ways to get
the warnings.

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