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Tsunami and the Eastern Seaboard

Updated on March 2, 2013

La Palma

A Threat?
A Threat? | Source


Now in recent years, after Indonesia and Japan, we are all aware of the threat of a tsunami.

Tsunamis are caused by natural occurrences such as earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. These occurrences usually happen under the sea, causing vast disruption to the oceans.

As with Indonesia and Japan these are most often associated with the “ring of fire”.

The ring of fire is a ring surrounding the Pacific Ocean. This ring consists of active volcanoes and included in this ring are Indonesia stretching up to Japan, through Hawaii to the Andes in South America. There is no doubt that this is one of the most active regions for volcanic eruptions.

The ring of fire is linked to the plates of the crust of the planet and includes fault lines that encompass that in the San Francisco area.

Obviously, activity along this ring of fire can affect the whole of the Pacific coastlines and in the case of Indonesia, the Indian Ocean also.

What though of the Atlantic?


It is understandable that any coastlines on the Pacific are being set up with tsunami warning systems; in places drills take place but what about the rest of us?

There are joining plates of the crust in the Caribbean.

Iceland is known as the land of fire and ice. The ice is obvious but the fire refers to the large amount of volcanic activity on the island.

In the 60’s the island of Tristan Da Cunha, an island volcano in the South Atlantic, erupted with such violence that the whole of the island’s inhabitants had to be evacuated.

The Azores and the Canary Islands are both volcanic island chains in the eastern Atlantic Ocean.

Surely, more attention should also be paid to the Atlantic coastlines?

Cumbre Vieja Volcano

The Cumbre Vieja volcano, on La Palma, is the most active volcano in the Canary Island chain. Scientists all agree that a major eruption could cause for the west flank of the volcano to fall into the sea, they are just not sure when.

Ever since a geologist by the name of Moore, found evidence under the sea off Hawaii in 1964, that flanks of volcanoes can actually come detached from the rest of the volcano and collapse into the water, other geologists have found proof of the same all around the globe.

Geologists believe that if the west flank were to sink in to the water, it would be a chunk of rock approximately up to 500 cubic kms in size.

This would create a potential tsunami of an initial height of 1000 meters. By the time, 8 hours later, that it reached the Caribbean and the US eastern seaboard, it could still have a height up to 50 meters.

Are cities prepared?

Are people prepared?

Don’t forget that the scientists agree that it is not a case of if it will happen but when.

Have the people been made aware of the upcoming threat or will the information just be restricted to science magazines and governments?

I suppose that the spreading of this information may put the prices of properties down and no government wants to upset the bankers, no matter how many lives it may cost.


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      Sammy 4 years ago

      I was in the 2004 Tsunami and my mom and dad and my brothers and sisters all 10 of them died in the 2004 Tsunami when i was 11 years old

    • somethgblue profile image

      somethgblue 5 years ago from Shelbyville, Tennessee

      Good article, the tsunami danger is certainly there however I suspect it will come from the New Madrid Fault Zone adjusting and the tsunami will head in the other direction across the Atlantic.

      I suspect Europe will feel the brunt of a true tsunami and America will experience more of a gradual but steady flooding.

      Because of the NMFZ earthquake in the near future it will basically tear American in half from Chicago to New Orleans. The coastline from Houston to Maine will drop 100 to 300 feet in a gradual progression.

      However the Canary Island seismic activity is increasing daily . . . so which will come first stay tuned!

    • lone77star profile image

      Rod Martin Jr 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      @rafken, I recognized that picture immediately and was drawn to your article. Good one!

      An article that touches on Cumbre Vieja and one other possible mega-tsunami:

      If that island slides off into the Atlantic, the tsunami that would result would make the December 2004 tsunami look like a wading pool slosh.