TSUNAMI HAZARD MITIGATION FOR ALASKA

Coastal Alaska communities live with the most serious tsunami risk in the United States. Historically, tsunamis generated by earthquakes in Alaska have caused damage and loss of life along the West Coast and across the Pacific. Here in Alaska, though, tsunamis generated by nearby earthquakes represent “near-field” hazards. This means people may have minutes rather than hours to reach safety.

The Earthquake Center works to make our coastal communities safer by providing state and local officials with the best possible information for addressing the tsunami hazards faced by their communities. We tackle community safety through the following projects:

Inundation Mapping Project

In partnership with the Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys and the Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, we evaluate and map potential inundation using numerical modeling of tsunami wave dynamics. The maps incorporate the best tsunami science available at the time of publication.
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Click on the map to explore our Tsunami Hazard Map Tool. Zoom to your area of interest by selecting a community and map type. You can also toggle between map and satellite views at the top right. At present, the interactive map includes flow depths and inundation boundaries for 26 at-risk communities, and hazard extent for an additional 27 communities.
Frequently Asked Questions about the Tsunami Hazard Map Tool

Click to enter the Tsunami Hazard Map Tool

 

Maritime Response Guidance Documents

These documents provide response guidance in the event of tsunamis for small vessels such as recreational sailing and motor vessels, and commercial fishing vessels.
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Pedestrian Travel Time Maps

For communities that have well-defined tsunami scenarios, it is possible to estimate the amount of time required to evacuate to high ground by foot.
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Tsunami News

March 19, 2020 update.    Like all of you, the Alaska Earthquake Center has quickly reconfigured to adhere to public health guidelines while trying to maintain business and operational continuity. Because three out of four earthquakes have always happened outside of working hours, the idea of coordinating our efforts away from the office is nothing new, albeit on a different scale. We are disappointed to have canceled many upcoming tsunami and earthquake forums and educational opportunities, but I believe all of you understand. In the big picture, we feel the center is well-positioned for the weeks ahead and that our core mission will not be compromised.