I’m OK! I’m currently in the Philippines (I’m about a month behind on posting this blog – catching up soon!) but I’m safe! They’re bracing for a possible tsunami on the east coasts of the northern islands (I’m in Boracay, an island in the center) after an 8.9 magnitude earthquake struck off the northeast of Japan, sending waves crashing through coastal towns. I thought I’d address the recent news (just as I did after leaving Jordan and Bahrain).
Live updates on the 8.9 earthquake in Japan here.
Philippines orders tsunami evacuation along coast
Philippine officials are ordering an evacuation of coastal communities along the country’s eastern seaboard in expectation of a tsunami following an 8.9-magnitude earthquake in Japan.
Philippine Volcanology and Seismology Institute director Renato Solidum says the first 3-foot (1-meter) high waves are expected to hit the northernmost Batanes islands by 5 p.m. (09:00 GMT) Friday.
Disaster management officials in Albay province southeast of Manila say they have ordered residents to move to designated evacuation sites that are at least 15 feet (5 meters) above sea level.
Philippines Orders Tsunami Evacuation
Published: Friday, Mar 11, 2011, 14:59 IST
Place: Manila | Agency: Reuters
The Philippines’ seismic agency raised its tsunami warning alert, advising people to stay away from shorelines in eastern coastal areas on Friday evening, after an 8.9 magnitude quake hit Japan.
“Based on tsunami wave models, coastal areas in Philippine provinces fronting the Pacific Ocean are expected to experience wave heights of at most 1 metre,” said Renato Solidum, head of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology.
He said the first wave would arrive between 5pm and 7pm (0900-1100 GMT).
“People are advised to stay away from the shoreline during the period,” Solidum said, with coastal residents advised to move inland.
Boats already at sea were advised to offshore in deep waters until further advised, while owners of boats in harbours, estuaries or shallow coastal water were advised to secure their vessels and move away from the water front.
Article from Bloomberg follows:
The temblor hit at 2:46 p.m. local time 130 kilometers (81 miles) off the coast of Sendai, north of Tokyo. Buildings shook in the capital, and television footage showed a wave of water engulfing farmhouses and roads along the coast and fires breaking out in an oil plant and buildings in Tokyo.
Waves traveling as fast as 800 kilometers an hour may be radiating from the epicenter, sparking warnings in countries that lie in their path. The quake is the strongest since a 9.1 magnitude temblor off North Sumatra in Indonesia in December 2004 left about 220,000 people dead or missing in 12 countries around the Indian Ocean.
Waves may reach the Philippines at 9:55 a.m. Greenwich Meantime, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said in a bulletin, advising authorities to “take appropriate action.”
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology raised its tsunami alert level.