A powerful 7.4 earthquake struck near Guerrero, Mexico this evening and the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Honolulu, Hawaii reports that hazardous waves from this earthquake are possible within 185 miles from the epicenter along the Pacific coast of Mexico.
“Government agencies responsible for threatened coastal areas should take action to inform and unstruct any coastal populations at risk in accordance with their own evaluations, procedures, and the level of threat”, the Tsunami Warning Center said in a bulletin. “Persons located in threatened coastal areas should stay alert for information and follow instructions from national and local authorities.”
A tsunami is a series of waves; the time between wave crests can vary from 5 minutes to an hour. The hazard may persist for many hours or longer after the initial wave. Impacts can vary significantly from one section of the coast to the next due to local bathymetry and the shape and elevation of the shoreline. Impacts can also vary depending on the state of the tide.
People caught in the water of a tsunami could drown, could be crushed by debris in the water, or be swept out to sea.
While the Tsunami Warning Center says there’s risk of tsunami in Mexico, the U.S. is not at risk at this time. “Based on all available data, a destructive Pacific-wide tsunami is not expected and there is no tsunami threat to Hawaii,” the Tsunami Warning Center said. The Tsunami Warning Center in Palmer, Alaska said the same about a tsunami threat for the U.S. West Coast including Oregon, Washington, and California, British Columbia, Canada, or anywhere in Alaska: “Based on earthquake information and historic tsunami records, the earthquake is not expected to generate a tsunami.”
As of press time, there were no updates on damages or casualties in Mexico from the powerful quake.