Recent high waves and rough seas being experienced in St.Kitts and Nevis are in no way in connected with a tsunami according to Jack Ngumbah of the Nevis Disaster Management Office.
High surf up to 5.5 meters or 18 feet have affected the northern shorelines of the British Virgin Islands, Anguilla and Barbuda an Nevis . It has been caused by a storm hitting the US East Coast.
Puerto Rico, if it didn’t have enough problems recovering from the recent hurricane, has been hit hard by the storm.
John Morales, a TV meteorologist in Florida who was raised in Puerto Rico, is calling it “one of the worst ocean swell events in recent decades,” and not just for Puerto Rico. Hispaniola and the Virgin Islands are getting smacked by these waves, too.
Andy Rivera, who runs the Puerto Rico Historic Building Drawings Society, agreed that these are the worst waves in decades. Rivera said, “Hurricane Maria didn’t affect Old San Juan as much as it did the other parts of Puerto Rico. But the hurricane made the historical town “softer” in other words, Maria made Old San Juan more susceptible to damage from waves like these, or even everyday storms.
“The ocean swell event has been so impactful in the Caribbean,” Morales wrote on Twitter, “that even within San Juan Bay the rising water and wave action caused damage along the outside of ancient wall surrounds Old San Juan.”
Over in Antigua and Barbuda, climatologist Dale Destin also dismissed the tsunami warning report, saying that the only thing the country was experiencing was high surf which had caused flooding in some areas.
“There is no tsunami bulletin in effect for Antigua. There are no known significant earthquakes that have happened in the past 24 hours and you need an earthquake to generate a tsunami,” he said.
The high surfs began Sunday and is said will last through, today Friday, March 9th. Rip currents are powerful channels of water flowing quickly away from shore, which occur most often at low spots and near structures such as groins such as jetties and piers.
Impacts of the current weather according to Nevis Disaster Management is loss of life: – strong currents that can carry even the strongest swimmers out to sea; injuries to beachgoers; beach erosion; sea water splashing onto low lying coastal roads; beach closures; localized disruptions to marine recreation and businesses; financial losses; damage to coral reefs and disruptions to potable water from desalination.
High surfs can knock spectators off exposed rocks and jetties. Breaking waves may occasionally impact harbors making navigating the Harbors channel dangerous.
Ngumbah said that all the Caribbean islands including St Kitts and Nevis will partake in Tsunami Exercise Caribe Wave 18 .
He highlighted the goals of the exercise. “The goal of that exercise is to strengthen the knowledge of the evacuation route, communication patterns and to assess the speed persons will take from the unsafe zone right through the safe ground. All of this is to improve resilience towards a tsunami and other multi hazards,” he said
Ngumbag said tsunami simulation event, which will take place on March 15, 2018
The Tsunami Exercise Caribe Wave 18 will have three scenarios: Barbados, Colombia and Puerto Rico. All scenarios will start, with one dummy message, at 2pm (time of the earthquake) and the 1st message for each of the three scenarios will be 5 minutes later at 2:05.