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UPDATE: Hawai’i Tsunami Advisory Cancelled

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   October 27th, 2012 · No Comments · Comments Via Facebook (21) · Featured, Maui News

Image courtesy USGS.

By Wendy Osher

(Update: 3:59 a.m. 10/28/12)

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center has issued a final notification saying the Tsunami Advisory for the State of Hawai’i has ended effective at 3:58 a.m.

According to PTWC officials, tsunami wave heights across the state are now below advisory levels and continue to diminish.

Based on all available data, the PTWC is now cancelling the Tsunami Advisory.

Smaller sea level changes and strong or unusual currents may still persist for several additional hours.

Appropriate caution should be exercised in nearshore waters.

(Update: 2:53 a.m. 10/28/12)

As of 1:02 a.m., Maui County officials had downgraded a Tsunami Warning to a Tsunami ADVISORY. County residents were allowed to return to homes in low-lying areas at 1:30a.m. on Sunday, October 28, 2012.

At 1:26 a.m., Maui County Civil Defense authorities said that based on all available data, the tsunami threat has decreased and is now at the advisory level and not expected to increase. Sea level changes and strong currents may still occur along all coasts that could be a hazard to swimmers and boaters as well as to persons near the shore at beaches and in harbors and marinas. The threat may continue for several hours. Beaches will be closed until the advisory is cancelled.

As of 2 a.m., officials with the State Civil Defense Agency said the Advisory for the state remains in effect following a 7.7 moment earthquake reported at 5:04 p.m. on Saturday, October 27, in the Queen Charlotte Islands region of British Colombia near Canada.

Authorities say that although the downgrade has occurred, tsunami waves continue to affect shorelines, beaches, harbors and marinas around the state. Officials remind the public to stay away from swimming or visiting shoreline areas.

This hazard could continue for several hours.

The situation is being monitored closely and the advisory will end when the hazard has passed.

(Update: 1:02 a.m. 10/28/12)

This message is to inform all Maui County residents that Maui County Civil Defense is downgrading from a tsunami warning to a tsunami advisory at this time.

This means that people are allowed to return to their homes at about 1:30 a.m., half an hour from the time this message was released.

The reason for half-hour delay is that our county crews still need uninterrupted access in order to turn the water and sewer services back on for some areas.

Again, please stay out of the tsunami evacuation areas for the next half an hour and then return to your homes.

The downgrade to a tsunami advisory also means that harbors remain closed until further notice. People are also advised to stay off of beaches and out of the water.

At this time we would like to thank the people of Maui County for reacting to this emergency quickly and calmly.

Although we have no reports of the tsunami damaging property or endangering lives, it is important that we treat these events seriously.

We would also like to thank Maui County Civil Defense, our police, fire, public works crews and other county workers who informed the public about what was happening and prepared us for the worst.

Thank you again for your cooperation.

(12:16 a.m. 10/28/12)

A Tsunami WARNING continues in effect for Hawaii due to a 7.7 magnitude earthquake reported earlier this evening in the Queen Charlotte Islands Region reported at 5:04 p.m. on Saturday, October 27, 2012.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center released the following updated tsunami wave measurements as of 10/28/12

REPORTS OF 4FT OSCILLATIONS CONTINUING AT WAILOA HARBOR NEAR HILO ON THE BIG ISLAND

GAUGE LOCATION LAT LON TIME AMPL PER

——————- —– —— —– ————— —–

HONOLULU OAHU 21.3N 157.9W 0903Z 0.15M / 0.5FT 12MIN

MOKUOLOE OAHU 21.4N 157.8W 0858Z 0.08M / 0.2FT 08MIN

MIDWAY 28.2N 177.4W 0923Z 0.09M / 0.3FT 10MIN

HILO HAWAII 19.7N 155.1W 0853Z 0.37M / 1.2FT 16MIN

KAWAIHAE HAWAII 20.0N 155.8W 0931Z 0.43M / 1.4FT 08MIN

KAHULUI MAUI 20.9N 156.5W 0907Z 0.76M / 2.5FT 12MIN

WAIANAE HI 21.4N 158.2W 0855Z 0.16M / 0.6FT 06MIN

HALEIWA HI 21.6N 158.1W 0844Z 0.43M / 1.4FT 10MIN

HANALEI HI 22.2N 159.5W 0843Z 0.17M / 0.6FT 22MIN

MAKAPU’U HI 21.3N 157.7W 0849Z 0.41M / 1.3FT 08MIN

(Update: 12:22 a.m. 10/28/12):

Water and wastewater service restored to all areas. Department of Water Supply personnel are opening valves and returning water service to normal status. Wastewater systems normal too. Mahalo for your cooperation. Although this activity is taking place, a Tsunami WARNING remains in effect.

(Update: 11:13 p.m. 10/27/12)

Tsunami impact wave heights have been reported by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center at the following locations:

KAHULUI MAUI, 1.9FT; WAIANAE HI 0.6FT, HALEIWA 1.4FT, HANALEI HI 0.6FT, MAKAPU’U HI 1.3FT, HILO HAWAII 0.7FT.

(Update: 11:09 p.m. 10/27/12)

Maui County residents are asked to stay away from the tsunami evacuation zones until the county gives the all clear.

Please remember that this all clear must come from MAUI COUNTY and not Oahu Civil Defense as some of you are watching Honolulu television stations.

Maui County will notify all media here on Maui and across the state when the all clear is given. In the meantime conserve water, stay off the roads and away from the tsunami evacuation zones.

(Update: 11 p.m.10/27/12)

We have received reports of surges in the East Maui area of Hana.  At least one person reported surges larger than what was seen during the March 2011 Japan generated quake. We also received reports of a smooth evacuation on Front Street in West Maui.  Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa said that after the 10:28 p.m. time frame had passed that Maui had been lucky to that point, but the County is still in a wait mode, as the first wave is sometimes not the largest.  Mayor Arakawa said everything that can be done is being done.  The public is advised to be vigilant as a tsunami warning remains in effect.

(Update: 10:10 p.m. 10/27/12)

The Wind Farm storage area at the Maui Research and Technology Park has been opened up as a waiting area for the public. This means you can park in the area but that there may not be water or restrooms available.

Also, the tsunami evacuation zones are CLOSED to all traffic except for emergency vehicles. Roads are blocked and motorists will not be allowed into these areas.

The Civil Air Patrol is now active and doing their rounds around Maui County to alert people in low-lying areas to seek higher ground.

(Update: 9:40 p.m. 10/27/12)

Lahainaluna High School gymnasium is now open as an evacuation center.  Earlier this evening authorities had also opened shelters at Molokai, and Maui High.  Police said Community Center parking lots were also available for use as well.

Also, as of 9:30 p.m. all roads connecting to tsunami evacuation zones have been CLOSED. Repeat, all roads connecting to tsunami evacuation zones have been closed as of 9:30 p.m.

Finally, this is a reminder to all Maui County residents that they are urged to conserve water and not flush their toilets as sewer and water services have been turned off until after the tsunami event. THIS IS APPLIES TO ALL MAUI COUNTY RESIDENTS AND NOT JUST THOSE LIVING IN LOW-LYING AREAS.

(UPDATE: 9:24 p.m. 10/27/12)

UPDATE: ***Roads in the Tsunami zone will be closed at 9:30 p.m. 10/27/12***  Please refer to your phone book for information.

(Update: 9:09 p.m. 10/27/12)

The Department of Education has opened up Maui High School gymnasium as an evacuation center.

Also, Civil Air Patrol is not in operation because their airplane is being repaired. Instead the Maui Police Department is sending out units to evacuate beaches and other low-lying areas.

**************************************

This is Maui Civil Defense Agency with a tsunami warning and immediate evacuation advisory.

A tsunami warning has been issued for the State of Hawaii. A dangerous tsunami has been generated which could damage low lying costal areas.

Estimated time of tsunami arrival for the State of Hawaii is 10:28 p.m. on Saturday, October 27.

ALL PERSONS IN LOW LYING COSTAL AREAS ARE ORDERED TO EVACUATE IMMEDIATELY TO HIGHER GROUND. REPEAT, ALL PERSONS IN LOW LYING COSTAL AREAS ARE ORDERED TO EVACUATE IMMEDIATELY TO HIGHER GROUND.

For persons outside the evacuation areas, please stay where you are, stay off the roads and highways and refrain from sightseeing. We ask that everyone keep the telephones clear for emergency calls only.

AT THIS TIME THE COUNTY WILL BE SHUTTING DOWN WATER AND SEWER SERVICES IN PREPARATION FOR THE TSUNAMI. PLEASE CONSERVE YOUR WATER AND DO NOT FLUSH YOUR TOILETS.

Please listen to local radio and television stations for additional information.

(Update: 8:36 p.m. 10/27/12)

The Maui Civil Defense Agency has issued a tsunami warning and immediate evacuation advisory.

A tsunami warning has been issued for the State of Hawaii. A dangerous tsunami has been generated which could damage low lying coastal areas.

Estimated time of tsunami arrival for the State of Hawaii is 10:28 p.m. on Saturday, October 27.

ALL PERSONS IN LOW LYING COASTAL AREAS ARE ORDERED TO EVACUATE IMMEDIATELY TO HIGHER GROUND. REPEAT, ALL PERSONS IN LOW LYING COASTAL AREAS ARE ORDERED TO EVACUATE IMMEDIATELY TO HIGHER GROUND.

For persons outside the evacuation areas, please stay where you are, stay off the roads and highways and refrain from sightseeing. We ask that everyone keep the telephones clear for emergency calls only.

AT THIS TIME THE COUNTY WILL BE SHUTTING DOWN WATER AND SEWER SERVICES IN PREPARATION FOR THE TSUNAMI. PLEASE CONSERVE YOUR WATER AND DO NOT FLUSH YOUR TOILETS.

Please listen to local radio and television stations for additional information.

On the Roads:

Please drive calmly and safely.  We have received reports of heavy traffic at the Ohukai/So. Kihei Road intersection in South Maui.  Callers have also reported there is heavy traffic through Lahaina Town on both Front Street and Honoapiilani Highway in town.

Kahului Airport UPDATE:

Kahului Airport as of 9 p.m. still had three flights that they planned to receive as scheduled. Kahului airport manager Marvin Moniz said that the county had advised him that they had shut off water and sewer services, so the airport is running on what is available. Moniz said this could become challenging for the bathrooms after a while. The airport plans to house people in place for now. Flights are currently standing by for clearance.

Hotel Guests: If you are in a high-rise, above the 4th floor should be fine. Hotels do have evacuation plans in place… please check with the hotel management and staff.

(Update: 8:13 p.m. 10/27/12)

A Tsunami WARNING has been issued for the State of Hawai’i effective at 7:09 p.m. THE ESTIMATED ARRIVAL TIME IN HAWAII OF THE FIRST TSUNAMI WAVE IS 10:28 p.m. HST Saturday, October 27, 2012. A 7.7 magnitude earthquake occurred at 5:04 p.m. in the Queen Charlotte Islands Region near Canada. Estimated wave heights are: 5 feet at Kahului Maui, 4 feet in Hilo Hawaii, 2.5 feet Hanalei Kauai, and 1.5 feet in Haleiwa Oahu.

(Posted: 10/27/12)

A Tsunami WARNING has been issued for the State of Hawai’i effective at 7:09 p.m.

This upgrade is due to the sea level readings received and the resulting change in the Hawaii Tsunami forecast.

An 7.7 magnitude earthquake occurred at 5:04 p.m. in the Queen Charlotte Islands Region.

EVALUATION:

A TSUNAMI HAS BEEN GENERATED THAT COULD CAUSE DAMAGE ALONG COASTLINES OF ALL ISLANDS IN THE STATE OF HAWAII. URGENT ACTION SHOULD BE TAKEN TO PROTECT LIVES AND PROPERTY.

A TSUNAMI IS A SERIES OF LONG OCEAN WAVES. EACH INDIVIDUAL WAVE CREST CAN LAST 5 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.

TSUNAMI WAVES EFFICIENTLY WRAP AROUND ISLANDS. ALL SHORES ARE AT RISK NO MATTER WHICH DIRECTION THEY FACE. THE TROUGH OF A TSUNAMI WAVE MAY TEMPORARILY EXPOSE THE SEAFLOOR BUT THE AREA WILL QUICKLY FLOOD AGAIN. EXTREMELY STRONG AND UNUSUAL NEARSHORE 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 ESTIMATED ARRIVAL TIME IN HAWAII OF THE FIRST TSUNAMI WAVE IS 10:28 p.m. HST Saturday, October 27, 2012.

MESSAGES WILL BE ISSUED HOURLY OR SOONER AS CONDITIONS WARRANT.

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