Q:

Can tsunamis be prevented?

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Quick Answer

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, tsunamis are a naturally occurring part of Earth's climate and can't be prevented. The best course of action people can take when dealing with tsunamis is to better prepare for them and minimize the damage that tsunamis inevitably cause. Consistent research and effort is being put into developing the means to help global communities mitigate the devastation of tsunamis.

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Full Answer

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and other similar agencies work diligently to establish effective warning systems and educational programs designed to alert people to the impending occurrence of tsunamis far enough in advance that communities are given adequate time to evacuate danger zones. One example is NOAA's Tsunami Warning System, which monitors the Pacific Basin for potential tsunami activity. Between its two centers in Alaska and Hawaii, NOAA is able to serve the areas of Alaska, British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, California, Hawaii and surrounding international locations that may be affected by any seismic activity connected to the Pacific Basin. NOAA states it has been working since 2004 to expand the outreach of its data expedition to include warning services to the Atlantic Oceans and the Caribbean Sea. NOAA also has an educational outreach program called the Hazard Education and Awareness Tool, which informs citizens in threatened areas of how to be prepared in the event of a tsunami.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the difference between a tsunami and a tidal wave?

    A:

    Tidal waves are shallow water waves caused by the gravitational interactions from the sun, moon and Earth, and tsunamis are large ocean waves triggered by volcanic eruptions, landslides and large earthquakes under the ocean floor. Tsunamis actually have nothing to do with the tides in the oceans.

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  • Q:

    Where do tsunamis happen most?

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    Tsunamis occur with the most frequency in the Pacific Ocean and around Indonesia. This is because of the properties of the Pacific Rim; it has a high number of active submarine earthquake zones, which are a major factor in the occurrence of tsunamis. However, it is also possible for tsunamis to occur in other places. The Mediterranean Sea and the Caribbean Sea are also both susceptible to tsunamis.

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  • Q:

    What does a tsunami sound like?

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    Witnesses to tsunamis report they make a roaring sound as they approach, similar to the sound of a freight train or a jet airplane. Tsunamis are triggered by underwater earthquakes, which are reported to make similar sounds. A hydrophone captured the sound of the 9.0 earthquake that struck Japan in 2011 and caused a tsunami across the Pacific Ocean, which was like the sound of a rocket taking off.

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  • Q:

    What are some tsunami experiments that kids can do?

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    Recommended tsunami experiments for children are those that demonstrate how a tsunami is created, how far it travels and how large it can become. Materials needed for a tsunami experiment include a measuring tape, a table, a marker, a rubber mallet, a rock and a long, clear plastic container.

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