Skip to comments.Tidal Waves Kill More Than 700 in Asia
Posted on 12/26/2004 1:18:45 AM PST by sully777
36 minutes ago JAKARTA, Indonesia - The world's most powerful earthquake in 40 years rocked northern Indonesia on Sunday and launched tidal waves that swamped villages and seaside resorts across Asia, killing more than 700 people in five countries.
Some 300 were reported killed in Sri Lanka, 286 in India, 94 in Indonesia, 61 in Thailand and seven in Malaysia. Hundreds were reported missing, and the death toll was expected to rise.
The U.S. Geological Survey ( news -web sites ) said a magnitude-8.9 quake one capable of massive damage struck off the coast of the Indonesian island of Sumatra at 8 a.m. Sunday. The USGS ( news -web sites ) revised the quake's size upward from magnitude-8.5.
Soon after it hit, immense waves or tsunamis crashed into several countries, and aftershocks in the magnitude-7 range were seen, the USGS said, raising the possibility of a catastrophic regional death toll.
Waves crashed into coastal villages over a wide area of Sri Lanka some 1,000 miles west of the quake's epicenter killing some 300 people and displacing thousands of others, said military spokesman Brig. Daya Ratnayake.
Parts of the northeastern districts of Muttur and Trincomalee were inundated by waves as high as 20 feet...Officials at the USGS, based in Golden, Colo., blamed the tidal waves on the quake...[geophysicist Julie] Martinez...said the quake was the world's fifth-largest since 1900 and the largest since a 9.2 quake hit Prince William Sound Alaska in 1964...The Indonesian quake struck just three days after an 8.1 quake struck the ocean floor between Australia and Antarctica, causing buildings to shake hundreds of miles away but no serious damage or injury.
(Excerpt) Read more at story.news.yahoo.com ...
The latest reports here(in India) put the toll in SriLanka at over a thousand & 350+ in 2 Indian states.
I'm so very sorry. Sri Lanka does not need this at all.
Let's pray the numbers don't go much higher!
The following site says quakes don't get bigger than 8.8-8.9.
Maldives under media black out as per this FR link http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1308548/posts
Casualties reported but nothing about deaths. Wonder if Perth, Australia is in danger, as well as all of West Africa, especially South Africa and Madagascar
There are other measurement schemes , for example the Great Alaska Quake of 1964 was magnitude 9.2 (Moment Magnitude)!
I recall reading the threads after the Japanese tsunami alerts that earthquakes have an echo effect on the other side of the globe. Don't know if its true but I would imagine this type of constant intense quaking for the past three days will cause something to change such as oil reserve deviations in Indonesia, volcanic eruptions along the ring of fire, and new thermals in the oceans and on land.
After living through a 7.1, I can't imagine the impact of an 8.9 -- almost 100 times as strong as a 7.1 (according to the other thread.)
Actually CNN has mentioned it in each report they've done (and they have been live off and on...CNN International) and articles are mentioning it with close to the amount of specifics that are known from anywhere else. I'm not sure where that title came from...It doesn't appear to be the actual article title, perhaps more the OP opinion? The title on the page is: Maldives flooded after tidal waves, reports of casualties but no figures
I think the bigger issue is that MANY of these areas have a HUGE lack of communication capabilities right now...and some are just so cut off becuase of damage that it's simply lack of real specifics because of the damage.
Just my two cents...
I have Indian friends with family near a bay. Can't recall at all the name of the bay except that it has dramatic tides. They all went back to India for a winter wedding. They said the bay would disappear and all that was left was sand, estuaries and sticking fish.
Sure hope their family is high and dry!
There are so many fishermen and their families living on the water/beaches. It is horrible. There is no way of guessing how many are dead -- 4000KM Diameter area potentially effected -- I don't know wat directions have the waves have gone.
My neighbors are crying at the tragedy -- me too. Thai news is mostly reporting Thai problems but I can imagine it is far more devistating in Indonesia, Malaysia, Maldives (so low lying), etc.
Thanks. This seems to be getting worse and worse.
At the outset, tsunamis are not like the run-of-the-mill street flooding in a Tennessee town. This tsunami reached 20 feet in Sri Lanka. And the wave is really the land becoming the ocean. People can be knocked off their feet in just a few inches of rushing water/imagine the forces created by these monsters!
The link I used linked ultimately to an AFP story used in the Khaleej Times http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle.asp?xfile=data/theworld/2004/December/theworld_December685.xml§ion=theworld
Maldives flooded after tidal waves, reports of casualties but no figures
(AFP) 26 December 2004
COLOMBO - The Indian Ocean tourist paradise of the Maldives was hit by tidal waves that flooded two thirds of the capital island, Male, and shut the international airport, the government said.
A statement from the Maldivian government said there were reports of casualties, but gave no figures. The tidal waves were triggered by a powerful earthquake that struck an island off Indonesia.
However, the government said two thirds of the capital was under about four feet (1.2 meters) of water in some areas. About a third of the countrys 330,000 population live in the highly congested capital island.
From about 9:00 am (0400 GMT) in the morning, the capital, Male, and other parts of the country have been flooded by the tsunami caused by the earthquakes in the eastern Indian ocean, the statement said.
Sri Lankas international airport said they were told by the authorities in the Maldives that tidal waves had flooded the Hululle airport island and the runway was closed indefinitely, cutting off air transport to the Maldives.
Maldives is a cluster of 1,192 tiny coral islands scattered some 800 kilometres (500 miles) across the equator and is vulnerable to any rise in sea levels.
The fate of tens of thousands of tourists in the Maldives was not immediately known.
only two hotels left (out of at least 15).
I know! I'm sorry...was just trying to clarify if people go to that thread the title was changed and wasn't the article title (the one it was linked to...as in the article)...the thread title and article title were very different.
Sorry I wasn't clear! Having spent time there and having friends and family in the area, I'm afraid this is going to get WAY worse (details wise)........
Again, sorry I wasn't clear! :-)
I heard about 1000 killed only in India.
And it's sounding like from the various regions of Sri Lanka mentioned (CNN Int'l TV) that it's already near 2000 there. :-(
I copy. Thought I was going to bed until I read all this news. Excuse my french but I'm wondering out loud as I read:
What the hell is going on???
There's quakes all over. I didn't realize the number of big quakes in the last three weeks. But this is a big big BIG BIG ONE!
UPDATE 18 Minutes ago
Same headline and source (Yahoo/AP) Over 2,200 Dead So Far
Re: Australian Broadcasting Corporation/Asia Pacific
Thousands killed as tsunamis sweep across Indian Ocean
Last updated: 26/12/2004 8:47:30 PM AEST http://abcasiapacific.com/news/stories/asiapacific_stories_1272475.htm
A series of earthquakes off Indonesia has triggered a series of tidal waves, killing thousands of people, with many still missing, and causing widespread damage.
There are initial reports of people dead and missing in Indonesia, Thailand, Sri Lanka, India, Malaysia and Maldive islands
The United States Geological Survey has now upgraded the magnitude of the initial quake off the Indonesian island of Sumatra to eight-point-nine.
Sri Lanka has declared a "state of disaster" after unprecedented tsunami waves lashed more than half the island's coastline, killing at least 1,000 people.
Officials say President Chandrika Kumaratunga, who is in London, is expected to cut short her holiday and return home.
India's government says at least 1000 people are dead while 99 people are confirmed dead in southern Thailand.
In Indonesia the death toll from the quake has risen to over 100
I'm afraid this is going to keep getting worse and worse :-( Each article keeps having new numbers...and they definitey aren't going down. Man, prayers for that whole region.....
Asian quake kills thousands
Sunday, December 26, 2004 Posted: 1017 GMT (1817 HKT)
(CNN) -- The world's most powerful earthquake in 40 years triggered massive tidal waves that slammed into villages and seaside resorts across Asia on Sunday, killing thousands across five countries.
Over 1,700 people in Sri Lanka were killed after tidal waves battered the country's eastern coast, according to Colombo police. Authorities fear the death toll there could rise.
People look at a car and debris that was washed by tidal waves in Madras, in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, Sunday, Dec. 26, 2004. A massive tidal wave triggered by an earthquake in Indonesia slammed into several parts of southern India Sunday killing at least 286 people, most of them in Tamil Nadu state. The U.S. Geological Survey (news - web sites) said the 8.9-magnitude earthquake in Indonesia is the largest in the world in 40 years. (AP Photo/M.Lakshman)
"I'm afraid this is going to keep getting worse and worse"
Unfortunately you are right. At least 10.000 killed in my opinion.
Unfortunately I'm afraid you're right, too........and "at least" probably being key words :-( Man......these reports are so surreal...and the low numbers...surely anyone who has been to these areas knows how unlikely it is people in many of the structures could survive something much less huge in scope... So sad..............
Anyone who has been to Patong would not recognize it. The small restraunts, bars and curio shops are all gone!! The business area was destroyed a half kilometer inland. The reports say it was without warning. The pictures would give the impression that the death toll would be much higher than is apparently to case (thank God).
Praying they do go down!
Just seems like getting numbers is going to be really hard beyond just logistics (lack of access to many areas and lack of communication) since they kept talking about how many people were just 'swallowed' up.....
This is so sad.........................
The common thread on the new is that if you are sitting on a tropical beach and happen to notice that the water has suddenly gone way, way out, turn around and run like hell for the high ground and away from the beach. Several of the survivors report that the are alive for doing just this. Apparently, this gave a 3 or 4 minute warning.
Apparently that was exactly what happened. Fear of the unknown reason for the sudden low tide saved several lives. I am hearing on the radio that perhaps my earlier, hopeful post on Ko Phi Phi was premature as some officials are estimating in excess of 200 dead there. As you can immagine, Thai journalism is a little chaotic just now. I mention their reports but give no support to their accuracy.
Some 200 long tail boats are missing with their owners and any passengers. This is by far the best way to see the beauty of Pang Nga bay -- truely one of the most spectacular sights in the world. However, these are not rough water craft. Usually the sea is very calm there. I cannot believe that these boats could survive the waves I have seen pictures of. Half of the 200 boats would likely be fishermen and the other half tourist boats carrying 2 to 10 passengers.
A google search of "Tidal Wave and Photo" turns up people wearing hats, flowers, riding bycycles, and cutsie wave paintings on black velvet--but no pictures of what a real tidal wave looks like.
There are several captured on video (or film). Most of the ones I've seen were captured in Japan after quakes.
Sri Lanka-the latest numbers are around 2,300.
Indonesia-between 400 to 700.
I'd suspect Indo's #s alone may at least double...these numbers just keep rising...we started at dozens and low hundreds in almost all these places and reports of an earthquake in Bangladesh, too ...then we jumped a bit, and now in under 2 hours most of those already high numbers have nearly doubled again.................. :-(
Thanks--if anyone has any links, it would be appreciated.
6000 killed and still rising...
There's some black and white video of a tsunami in the 1960s hitting Hilo, Hawaii.
Along with the Japanese stuff (mostly at night.) They don't look anything like what the movies or even documentaries portray; there's no big breaking wave, just a fast moving rising tide.
Saw an old black and white 20 or 30 years ago of a much earlier era in the So. Pacific. It showed humans by a tower maybe 15-20 ft. high being swamped by monster tidal wave. Horrendous. Height of human and tower put it all in perspective.
Unfortunately we were right. 15.500.