New Zealand Tsunami alert (Chile earthquake this time)

Click the thumbnail at left for the predicted arrival times for tsunami waves following the 8.8 magnitude earthquake in Chile. The computer model is from the NOAA West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center.
ADAGIO is awaiting the arrival of the first signs of the tsunamic in Whangarei, NZ. We are 12 miles up the narrow, winding river, so we expect the tsunami to be attenuated here.
Latest bulletin:

Wellington – A tsunami wave of 1.5 metres hit New Zealand’s Chatham Islands, 700 kilometres south-east of the mainland, on Sunday morning as the country went on a full-scale alert following the Chile earthquake. The National Crisis Management Centre said the tsunami, moving across the Pacific at 800 kilometres an hour, could produce even higher wave heights by the time it reached New Zealand’s main islands, where people in all coastal areas were warned to stay off beaches and keep out of rivers and estuaries.Civil Defence Minister John Carter said “surges of huge volumes of water” were predicted around the coast and urged people to keep listening to radio reports and obey police orders.Tsunami waves built up as they hit the Chatham Islands, rising from 20 to 50 centimetres and a third at 1.5-metres.Officials said waves of 20 centimetres had been recorded on tsunami gauges at East Cape, Gisborne, Napier and Castlepoint on the east coast of the North Island, and bigger surges were likely to follow over a period of several hours.Radio New Zealand reported unusual sea activity around the country with waters slowly receding large distances before rushing back to the beach.

NZ tsunami gaugesWe are monitoring the NZ government Tsunami Gauge Network graphs, which are updated every 5 minutes. At 2150 UTC we see indications of the tsunami arrival at the Chatham Islands about 2 hours before the first wave arrived at North Cape. So we should be able to see any serious waves at the Chathams with a couple of hours advance warning.

Click the thumbnail for the full size image.

The latest bulletin from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center reads:

BULLETIN
TSUNAMI MESSAGE NUMBER  18
NWS PACIFIC TSUNAMI WARNING CENTER EWA BEACH HI
1133 AM HST SAT FEB 27 2010
TO - CIVIL DEFENSE IN THE STATE OF HAWAII

SUBJECT - TSUNAMI WARNING SUPPLEMENT

A TSUNAMI WARNING CONTINUES IN EFFECT FOR THE STATE OF HAWAII.

AN EARTHQUAKE HAS OCCURRED WITH THESE PRELIMINARY PARAMETERS

ORIGIN TIME - 0834 PM HST 26 FEB 2010
COORDINATES - 36.1 SOUTH 72.6 WEST
LOCATION - NEAR COAST OF CENTRAL CHILE
MAGNITUDE - 8.8 MOMENT

EVALUATION

A TSUNAMI HAS BEEN GENERATED THAT COULD CAUSE DAMAGE ALONG
COASTLINES OF ALL ISLANDS IN THE STATE OF HAWAII. URGENT ACTION
SHOULD BE TAKEN TO PROTECT LIVES AND PROPERTY.

THE TSUNAMI HAS REACHED HAWAII AND IS JUST BEGINNING TO REGISTER
ON BIG ISLAND GAUGES. LATER BULLETINS WILL REPORT DETAILS OF THE
HAWAII OBSERVATIONS

The following NOAA computer model is interesting — but I don’t know how to interpret the intensity scale.

This NOAA computer model shows the estimated energy propagation from the Chile earthquake.
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