Early Morning Wake-up Call!

Jan 15, 2022 | 1 comment

Undersea volcano eruption at the Pacific nation of Tonga Saturday, January 15, 2022.

5:45 a.m.  A telephone call from Pacific County Emergency Services told me (I think) that there had been a volcano in Tonga and that we should expect a three-foot (maybe less) tsunami wavc about 8:15 a.m. (I think.)  We were being given a warning to stay off the beaches but it would not be necessary to evacuate.

I hadn’t had my first sip of coffee yet, so those details coming to me over my landline are a bit foggy in my mind.  Ditto — foggy — outside our windows as it began to grow light and we tried to see what the bay was doing.  We  looked up the tide chart for Nahcotta (the closest port to us) and found that it would be a 10.46 ft high tide at 11:29 a.m.  Even had the times been coordinated, not much to worry about if our recent 12-foot king tides were any guide.

Sometimes it’s hard to tell where the sky ends and the bay begins…

I really didn’t think about it again until I was on my way out to the chickens about 9:00 a.m.  Foggy enough so I could barely make out the bay, still well within her banks, as far as I could see.  Later in the morning I looked again.  This time, there was water in the lane for a way but nothing in our yard.  Some tsunami…

For fun, I looked online to see what the latest word might be from the Pacific County .  Imagine my surprise (NOT!) to find this announcement from the Pacific County Sheriff’s Department: TSUNAMI WARNING ISSUED IN ERROR followed by this message:  South Bend Washington — The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency has learned that a tsunami Warning has been issued in error by AccuWeather (www.accuweather.com) a web and app based weather related program/company.  There is currently no Tsunami Warning in effect for the Long Beach Peninsula.  Questions may be directed to…

Perhaps the warning was downgraded to an advisory at this point.  I think we could have all had a few minutes extra shuteye had we known.  I mean who in the world really thinks that AccuWeather (or any other weatherman) might be accurate about tsunamis — much less about the weather?  In fact, what we usually say here in Oysterville is, if you want to know what the weather’s doing, look out your window.  Ditto the tsunami, I might say — at least if it’s a mini-tsunami like this one was.

Culture Areas – Pacific Islands

But, as much as I like to poke a little fun now and then, I must say I’m grateful for the alerts, advisories, and warnings and all that our Pacific County Emergency Management folks do.

And a shout-out to my friend Neil’s caregiver, Vianni, who is from Tonga.  I hope he and his family are safe.



1 Comment

  1. Idolene Ellis

    I’m thankful that it was a. non-event. I’m even more thankful to know that we have plenty of emergency warning set up and tested on our phones and through Facebook to keep us informed of what is happening. Let’s hope and pray that we don’t need to use them.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *