Saturday, February 27, 2010

Saturday Tsunami Edition

So I've nothing better to do than sit here.
The anticipation and the waiting.
Probably the worst part.
Now some of us have been through this before.
Well maybe not exactly like this.
Already gas stations are reporting that they have run out of fuel.
Once it started to look like this was real, I went out early this morning and got some gas.
And cigarettes.
I filled up some containers with water and checked out the canned goods and toilet paper situation.
And since I am part Boy Scout, I think we're okay.
The people in charge are taking this one very seriously.
Last time this happened, the wave did not appear and the Civil Defense took it in the chin. I mean you displace quite a large amount off people, and then nothing happens, well, it is sort of a hassle.
I think this time though, even the most skeptic person would agree that because of the size of the earthquake this time the threat is very real.

9:03AM HST
Local news reporting police helicopter is telling surfers on the North shore to get out of the water.
Civil Defense sirens going off again.
Evacuation centers are open.

People being people, you are going to get those who are going to want to check this out. Last time, there were reports of thrill seekers going out to the waters edge to see what was going to happen.
I wonder what is happening this time.
Now the surfers. Well a small swell was expected last night and the tide is low right now. Surfers being surfers, well, what can you expect?
If the surf is rocking, and no one else is out there, I mean, that's pretty much the normal behavior. You gotta remember, surfers go out in hurricane conditions.
Hell, I was even pondering getting a ride in before the wave comes.
Then I thought the better of it.
Today is my dialysis day, so I'm a bit concerned about that. My clinic is located in the basement of a hospital so if something happens, I'm wondering if I'll be able to get in.

9:13AM HST
Pacific Tsunami Warning Center reports Marquesas Islands saw a six foot wave.
Local news showing boats headed out too see. Police still telling people to get off the beach.

People are treating this like this is the real deal.
Which is a good thing.

9:42AM HST
Local news reporting Navy is moving ships out of Pearl Harbor.
Streets in the tidal zone will be closed starting at 10:00AM local time.
Traffic cams showing nearly deserted streets.
First wave expected to hit Hilo at 11:05AM HST.

10:10AM HST
Local news showing one dude still sitting out there in the surf catching waves.
Local weather guy reports "surf is excellent" but still extemely dangerous.
Streets in the evacuation zone are closed.

10:25AM HST
This is getting somewhat surreal.
One of my neighbors is weed wacking his yard.
It's a nice day:

I suppose that makes it all the more strange. Everything seems so normal.
Well I guess that is going to change in about an hour or so.
Here's a pic of the pond I live near:

The thing about living on an island is that sea level means down the block.
Best guess is that I'm about two miles inland. The pond is connected to the ocean, but last time I checked, the stream mouth was covered in sand. If we do get a wave that come in here, the water level will rise, then have no where to recede.
I hope they dredged the stream mouth this week.
I guess we'll see in a little less than an hour.

10:30AM HST
Civil Defense sirens going off again.
Local news reporting that National Guard is sending up helicopters to help monitor the situation.
Big Island Mayor is being interviewed on the local news.
Camera shot is of Hilo Bay, which will be the first place to see the wave.
Coast Guard helicopter can be seen flying over Hilo Bay.
News is reporting one last siren will sound at 11:00AM HST.
Traffic cams showing deserted streets now.

My thinking is that last siren means that you better be able to run fast.
Or at least be wearing your personal floatation device.
Kailua Bay faces the north east, but seems to be protected from the tsunami by the other islands. That doesn't really seem to matter here, for the wave will wrap around the islands and keep going.

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