Authorities in New Zealand have given the all clear following the sub-sea quake that sent a huge tidal wave over the Samoa Islands.
Around Auckland people weren’t taking any chances after the initial warning was given, flocking to higher ground. That alert was later cancelled after data showed a much smaller wave would hit New Zealand’s east coast.
In 2004, the enormous Asian Tsunami killed about 230,000 people across 11 countries.
Reports suggest the disaster this time round is nowhere near that scale, but the sheer power of nature gives authorities virtually little or no time to react.
US Geological Survey Seismologist Susan Hough said: ‘‘Problem is, where the coast, where the land is, right next to the earthquake, you typically don’t have enough time to digest the data and get a warning out in an effective way. I haven’t heard if any warning was made in this case.’‘
On Japan’s east coast, emergency services mobilised as the Tsunami headed inland.
Tens of thousands of people evacuated low lying areas and town volunteers closed specially constructed metal barriers to protect ports.