Thursday, February 13, 2014

Feature: Devastating tsunami could hit Caribbean from Florida to Brazil: Report

A report published in London, England Wednesday states that the Caribbean could be at risk from a mega-tsunami that scientists warn could devastate coastlines from Florida to Brazil. But it did not provide a timeline for the catastrophic event.

It said the wave would rise after a volcanic eruption in the Canary Islands, adding that part of a mountain collapsing into the sea would generate the wave. The report said it would be "the biggest ever recorded and would be an unstoppable force, travelling at speeds of up to 500mph."

Scientists say the massive wall of water would likely make first landfall on the West Saharan coast of Morocco, where the wave could measure as much as 330 feet from trough to crest.

According to the report, "The greatest destruction was nevertheless expected in the built-up coastal areas of the Caribbean, Florida and Brazil", citing the forecast by Dr Simon Day of the Benfield Greig Hazard Research Centre at University College, London.

"The tsunami could reach heights of 130 feet to 164 feet throughout the region and travel several miles inland, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake.

"Earlier research by Dr Day had predicted that a future eruption of the Cumbre Vieja volcano in the Canary Islands was likely to cause the western flank of the mountain to slide into the sea," the report said.

The prediction is that the tsunami would reach the Caribbean and Florida in eight or nine hours.  

It quotes Dr Day: "The collapse will occur during some future eruption after days or weeks of precursory deformation and earthquakes.

"An effective earthquake monitoring system could provide advanced warning of a likely collapse and allow early emergency management organisations a valuable window of time in which to plan and respond.

"Eruptions of Cumbre Vieja occur at intervals of decades to a century or so and there may be a number of eruptions before its collapse. Although the year-to-year probability of a collapse is therefore low, the resulting tsunami would be a major disaster with indirect effects around the world.

"Cumbre Vieja needs to be monitored closely for any signs of impending volcanic activity and for the deformation that would precede collapse."

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai