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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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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Click to enter the Tsunami Hazard Map Tool

TSUNAMI HAZARD MAP TOOL

Click on the map above 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 21 at-risk communities.
 
 

Tsunami News

Since 1998 the Alaska Earthquake Center has partnered with the Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys and the Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management to produce maps that display tsunami hazards for coastal communities. These tsunami inundation maps show areas that would be flooded during a worst-case tsunami event.

The tsunami maps are now available through a mobile-friendly web tool. The tool allows you to quickly access communities with inundation products and explore various types of data in an online map interface. You can zoom in and out of areas of interest, turn data layers on and off, and even quickly share your map and settings with others, not to mention the ability to bookmark your map for future use.

You can access the map by visiting tsunami.alaska.edu or clicking on Tsunamis > Tsunami Inundation Maps above.

The following instructional video walks you through the tool’s use and its new features.