Just minutes after a 7.9 magnitude earthquake hit the Aleutian Islands Monday, I arrived at the National Weather Service-Monterey. Meteorologist Logan Johnson and the team were in the process of getting reports from forecast models as to whether to issue a tsunami advisory or warning for the Central Coast.
The Tsunami Warning Center in Alaska monitors all the quakes and they run the models to see how deep and how strong the quake is. Johnson says buoys in the ocean play an important part too in an event like this.
“The buoys will measure how high the water rises and falls,” says Johnson, “it’s off of those measurements that we get a better sense if a tsunami is going occur or not. So what we're doing right now is watching the buoys for any kind of report.”
Johnson says they’re also up against a time frame. “So for an earthquake like this, it’ll be 6 to 9 hours for that wave to reach the California coast. So based on that, the buoy report and how deep the earthquake was will determine if there's going to be a tsunami threat to the California coast.”
As of 4:20 P.M. on Monday, the National Weather Service models showed no concern for the Central Coast. But as residents here, were can be thankful that the weather service has the technology and the system in place for public safety.
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Again, no threat for the Central Coast this time.