ESSAY: Tsuamis

The horrific news on the tsunamis that struck the Indian Ocean December 2004 and the tsunamis/earthquakes in Chile, Haiti, and Japan a few years ago touched all of us. Through aid and other forms of help the people affected are getting their lives back together. However, the death and destruction will leave a permanent reminder to all those who survived the devastation. DB-2 is intended to bring more awareness of tsunamis.

When I was a graduate student in oceanography over 40 years ago the word tsunamis was not used to describe the wave. Rather then the word was tidal wave. What is the origin of the word tsunamis and why is the word tidal wave the wrong word?

What caused the tsunamis that struck the countries in the Indian Ocean and off the coast of Japan?

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What are the main components of the tsunami warning system that is present in the Pacific Ocean?

Some people are calling for a tsunami warning system for the Atlantic; why do you believe we may need one.

Assuming an oceanic plate in the Caribbean shift resulting in tsunami and that you had warning that it occurred. What would be the main components of your ?tsunami preparation plan??

And the following link is an outstanding discussion of tsunamis’ and how to be prepared for the tsunamis threat (Links to an external site.):



The word tsunami originates from the Japanese language, and it means harbor wave. Tsunamis are a series of waves initiated by the displacement of large bodies of water. They are caused by gas bubbles in the sea, erupting submarine volcanoes or earthquakes.  Originally, tidal waves were used to describe tsunamis (Geist, 2017). However, this is not right since tidal waves are generated by the gravitational force caused by the moon and sun.

The tsunamis that struck the countries along the Indian Ocean Coast in 2004 was as a result of an earthquake on the ocean floor. The energy generated by the quake was equivalent to approximately 23,000 atomic bombs used in Hiroshima. An undersea earthquake also caused the tsunami that occurred off the coast of Japan.

The tsunami warning system present in the Pacific Ocean has two main components. The first being a network of seismic-monitoring equipment, which helps scientists detect any earthquakes (Miller et al., 2016).  The second component is the sea-level gauges that detect any activity or abnormal changes happening at the sea level.

Despite tsunamis being a rare occurrence on the Atlantic due to the lack of subduction zones, having a tsunami warning system is crucial for several reasons. It would help detect any tsunamis occurring on the ocean as well as identify their causes and possible destruction levels (Miller et al., 2016). It would also help in issuing the public with critical warnings, giving the people a chance to evacuate, hence preventing the loss of life and damage to property. Tsunami preparation is crucial to ensuring survivability, therefore having a plan in case of any incidences is vital for individuals living in tsunami….

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