Tsunami Generated by Earthquake
of April 1, 1946, Aleutian Islands,
Alaska. All that remained of Scotch
Cap Lighthouse on Unimak Island,
Alaska after the tsunami. A
magnitude 7.3 earthquake with
source to the south of Unimak
Island generated the tsunami that
destroyed the five-story lighthouse
which was located 9.8 m above sea
level. All five occupants were
killed. Debris was deposited as
high as 35 m above the sea. This
tsunami was one of the most
destructive ever to occur in the
Tsunami Generated by
Earthquake of April 1, 1946,
Aleutian Islands, Alaska. A
view of the tsunami generated
in the Aleutian Islands striking
the beachfront area at the
Hospital on the Island of
Hawaii about 3,800 km from
the generating area. In this area
east of Hilo, Hawaii, waves
were 6.1 m high overtopping
the breakwater and causing
minor flooding at the hospital.
These catastrophic waves
engulfed the Hawaiian Islands
suddenly and unexpectedly.
Elsewhere the maximum rise of
water was almost 8 m in Hilo
and as much as 17 m in other
areas on the island of Hawaii.
Tsunami Generated by Earthquake of April 1, 1946, Aleutian Islands, Alaska.
Wreckage on Kamehameha Avenue, Hilo, Hawaii. Every house on the main street
facing Hilo Bay was washed across the street and smashed against the buildings on
the other side. Houses were overturned, railroads ripped from their roadbeds,
coastal highways buried, and beaches washed away. The waters off the island were
Tsunami Generated by Earthquake of March 9, 1957, Aleutian Islands, Alaska
(mag. 8.3) It generated a 8-m tsunami that did great damage on Adak Island
(alaska) especially to the fuel and oil docks. However, the Hawaiian Islands
incurred the greatest damage (about $5,000,000 in 1957 dollars).
Arrival of a major wave at Laie Point on the Island of Oahu, Hawaii about 3,600
km from the source. The highest wave was 3.6 m in Hawaii.
Tsunami Generated by Earthquake of May 22, 1960, Coast of Chile. Aerial view
showing tsunami damage and wave extent. Two hundred deaths were reported
here from the tsunami generated just off Chile's coast by a magnitude 8.6
earthquake. Over 1,000 people were killed, most of them by the tsunami.
Aftermath of the Chilean tsunami in the Waiakea area of Hilo, Hawaii, 10,000 km from the
generating area. Parking meters were bent by the force of the debris-filled waves. Note the
scattered debris and the gutted foundation. The earthquake off the coast of central Chile
generated this tsunami that affected the entire Pacific Basin. One of the most seriously
affected areas was Hilo, Hawaii, where 61 deaths and $23 million in damage occurred.
Tsunami Generated by Earthquake of May 26, 1983 in Japan (mag. 7.7). This slide
shows Oga Aquarium in Akita Prefecture, Japan, prior to the arrival of the
The tsunami generated by a magnitude 7.7 earthquake destroyed 700 boats and 59
houses for a total of $800 million in property damage in Japan. One hundred and
four people were drowned in Japan.
Aonae, Okushiri Island looking southeast.
Structures in foreground were damaged by fires fueled by above-ground kerosene
and propane tanks following the tsunami. The concrete steps, leading from the
bluff to the lower residential area, provided a means of escape for some residents
following the strong earthquake.
A view of tsunami and related fire damage on southeast Okushiri Island in the
community of Aonae. Photo orientation is looking northeast. Numerous fires
broke out following the tsunami, adding to the property loss and misery. Over 120
people were killed in Japan (Okushiri and Hokkaido Islands) by the tsunami.
Aonae, Okushiri Island, looking north.
Note red/white lighthouse is leaning to the northeast. Damage to the lighthouse
was caused by the earthquake and not the tsunami. Debris in the foreground is all
that remains of a prosperous tourist area occupied by small shops, houses, and
kiosks. Concrete foundations and pads, wiped clear of houses and other structures,
can be seen in the debris.
Aonae, Okushiri Island, looking south
Obelisk in the distance survived the damaging tsunami waves that rose to a height
of five to ten meters at Aonae. Note how the waves undercut the concrete pad in
the foreground. No wood-framed structure survived the tsunami waves in this
Debris scattered near harbor at Aonae, Okushiri Is.
Note the plastic containers and other debris scattered near the harbor at Aonae.
Many of the personal and business effects show that Aonae was a prosperous
tourist community with a well established squid and sea urchin fishery.