Tonga tsunami warning after underwater volcanic eruption

On Saturday January 15, the underwater volcano, Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha’apai, located 65 km from the capital of Tonga, Nuku’alofa, erupted. The tsunami alert was triggered in the Pacific country which was hit by violent floods.

The images reaching us from the other side of the world are impressive. On Friday January 14, and then again on Saturday January 15, the Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha’apai submarine volcano, located about 60 km north of Tonga’s capital, Nuku’alofa, erupted .

“About 20 minutes later, recount The Sydney Morning Herald, a 1.2 meter tsunami hit the coast of Nuku’alofa. Residents then rushed to higher areas amid rains of ash and pebbles.”

Even if the island’s meteorological services had warned the population of the risk, the scenes observed still impressed the locals who filmed and broadcast the violent arrival of the waves.

“On social media, some people said they heard the eruption before the waves started rolling in, crashing through fences and flooding coastal homes,” continues the Australian daily, which warns: these events could happen again.

“The volcano is active and there could be more eruptions,” saidffirms the tsunami expert, Andrew Gissing, whose statements are taken up by the Sydney newspaper.

Thus, the Canberra government has said it is ready to assist Tonga, and according to information from the Australian media, it is in the process of “to assess the damage” suffered by the nation of the pacific.

As for the neighboring countries, they also had a rather stressful day, concludes the Sydney Morning Herald which details:

Residents of Fiji said they heard the eruption, as the country issued an advisory warning residents of low-lying areas to stay away from the shore. In New Zealand, a tsunami warning for the coastal areas of the north and east coasts of the North Island and the Chatham Islands had also been issued, as had American Samoa.

Editorial selection

  • Tonga
  • Volcanoes and volcanic eruptions

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