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How to Survive a Tsunami
updated: Mar 26, 2014, 11:46 AM

Source: Santa Barbara County Fire Department

Strong ground shaking, a loud ocean roar, or the water receding unusually far, are nature's way of warning that a tsunami may be coming. An official tsunami warning may be issued via radio, text, television, or telephone. If any of these warning signs are observed, immediately go to higher ground or inland. A tsunami may arrive within minutes and may last for hours. Stay away from coastal areas until officials announce that is safe to return.

The Santa Barbara County Fire Department reminds people that if you feel a strong earthquake while near the coast:

1. Protect: Protect yourself during the earthquake. If indoors, DROP under a sturdy table or object, COVER your head and neck and HOLD ON. If outdoors, move to a clear area if you can safely do so.

2. Move: Move to high ground as soon as it is safe to do so. Do not wait for an official tsunami warning. Avoid downed power lines and weakened overpasses.

3. Stay: Remain on high ground. Waves from a tsunami may not arrive for hours. Return to the coast only when officials have announced that it is safe to do so.

All California coastal counties have tsunami hazard guidance maps and have posted tsunami hazard zones. These signs and maps show what areas are safe and what areas may be at risk. The entire California coast is vulnerable to tsunamis.


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