Natural warning signs of tsunami

The following are natural signs of tsunami that you may, but not always, experience when you are near the coast in Australia or overseas. If you notice any of these warning signs move away from the water's edge to higher ground.

You may:

  • Feel the earth shake. A large undersea earthquake may be felt prior to tsunami by an ongoing shaking of the ground in coastal regions. However, you may not feel an earthquake if the source is far away.
  • See the ocean drop. As tsunami approach the shoreline, the sea level may, but not always, recede/drop dramatically before returning as a fast-moving wall of water.
  • Hear an unusual roaring sound. A roaring sound may precede the arrival of tsunami.

In the unlikely event that a tsunami is generated close to our coastline little or no warning may be received. Natural warning signs may alert you to a tsunami threat.

drawdown showing ripsThis image shows drawdown at Koh Jum Island during the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami.


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