Skip to comments.Tidal Waves Kill More Than 3,200 in Asia (Update: Death toll now tops 11,500)
Posted on 12/26/2004 2:09:10 AM PST by Grzegorz 246
JAKARTA, Indonesia - 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 more than 2,200 people in five countries.
Tourists, fishermen, homes and cars were swept away by walls of water unleashed by the 8.9-magnitude earthquake, centered off the west coast of the Indonesian island of Sumatra.
Government and hospital officials both in Sri Lanka and India said 1,000 people had been killed in each of those countries. More than 200 were reported killed in Indonesia, 61 in Thailand and 10 in Malaysia. Hundreds were reported missing, and the death toll was expected to rise.
The U.S. Geological Survey (news - web sites) said the quake was a magnitude-8.9. Geophysicist Julie Martinez said it was the world's fifth-largest since 1900 and the largest since a 9.2 quake hit Prince William Sound Alaska in 1964.
The effects of the quake reverberated throughout the region, as waves as high as 20 feet crashed into coastal villages over a wide area.
In Sri Lanka some 1,000 miles west of the quake's epicenter officials and hospital doctors said 1,000 people had died. They warned that the death toll was likely to rise. Military spokesman Brig. Daya Ratnayake confirmed up to 500 had died. He said a higher toll would not surprise him.
A wall of water slammed into southern India, killing about 1,000 people, mostly in Tamil Nadu state, Home Minister Shivraj Patil said.
Hospital and local officials said the death toll on Indonesia's Sumatra island was 201 people.
Communications were down in several coastal towns facing the epicenter of the undersea quake off the western coast of the island's Aceh Province, raising fears of widespread and as yet unreported damage on the island.
Martinez blamed the tidal waves on the quake.
"This is not unusual occurrence for an earthquake this size and where it's located," said geophysicist Julie Martinez.
May God have mercy on those people.
This is BIG!
Sadly, early estimates in natural disasters are always underestimated. I hope that this will be an exception to the rule.
What a mess. Hope our interests are safe and sound out there. Anyone know what assets we have deployed in that area of the world?
May those who mourn be comforted.
Diego Garcia springs to mind, S.W. of India in the Indian Ocean. I wonder how the Seychell Islands fared?
My gosh. That is a big one. I was in SF in ,89 for the 7.1 and I thought that it was BIG!!! each .1 is 10 times bigger WOW.
God Bless ...
Here in Washington state, there are signs all over near the coast about tsunami evacuation routes.
If and when a tsunami hits, the first dude on the road will be some old geezer driving a 65 Rambler, he will make it halfway up the road before he blows a rod, and everyone behind him will be wishin they invested in a rubber raft.
They won't get hit by the tidal wave.
But about that time, Mt. St. Helens will do, as all beautiful women do on occasion, wake up with a really bad attitude.
Doesn't Arthur C. Clarke live in Sri Lanka? Any news on how he's doing? I know he's confined to a wheelchair.
As far as I know he still does. This area is routinely known for huge natural disasters, with the floods from the Ganges, etc.
Remember, last Christmas, something like 40,000 were killed in Bam in Iran, I was deeply struck by that politics aside, I recall seeing pictures of the fortresses and citadels there when I was a child.
My heart goes out to all of them.
Not one of the 24/7 cables nor one of the majors is covering.
I can't imagine a more terrifying natural disaster, one that knows no season and that gives you no warning cues from your immediate environment, coming out of the clear blue.
Fox did a minute at the top of the hour. They go live at 7 am, and I suspect they will have more. Unfortunately, it's the idiot crew of the weekend Fox and Friends, so clarity will not be the watchword.
I found another CNN covering it (CNN Int'l) ...it had been on regular CNN (vs. headline news) for parts of it, but then they kept going to dumb stuff like the others. I'm not sure what this is that I finally found it on (my TV guide said CTN...Country Television Network...not sure if that's it's real name) but it's the ONLY thing I've found to consistently have reporting...
I don't understand why CNN doesn't keep it on...it's not like they need to find someone to report...this guy on CNN Int'l has been reporting for almost the past three hours straight...... Very odd it's just the silly one minute on Fox and NOTHING else. This is a huge event..........................
Surely in the next half hour the majors will wake up...that's 7 on the east coast then...? Maybe?
Thanks. I'm back to watching the Buckley father and son appearance from 9Dec on C-SPAN. The program was introduced as the first time they had ever appeared together on the same stage.
I believe it is 10 times for each whole number increase.
But then I've been sneaking around the web. I found this:
Send in FEMA.