Tsunami debris from the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan is showing up on our coastline. A network of 32 drop-off sites on the Oregon coast are now ready to receive beach debris washing ashore from the tsunami that struck Japan in March 2011.
The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department expresses deep gratitude to the Oregon Marine Debris Team (SOLVE, Oregon Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation, Sea Reach, Washed Ashore, Oregon Shores Conservation Coalition), 211info, the Oregon Refuse and Recycling Association, and all the coast waste haulers for their immediate and helpful response to the tsunami debris problem.
A: In most cases, it is extremely difficult to determine whether debris came from the tsunami.
Tsunami debris from the March 11, 2011 tsunami in Japan has started arriving on the Oregon coast. Tsunamis are recorded in Australia about once every two years, and most are small and present little threat of land inundation to our coastal communities. As a result of the Australian Tsunami Warning System (ATWS) Project, jointly undertaken by the Bureau of Meteorology (Bureau), Geoscience Australia (GA) and Attorney-General's Department (AGD) and funded by the Australian Government, Australia now has a comprehensive, independent tsunami warning service to advise the media, public and emergency authorities of any tsunami threat to Australia and its offshore territories.
The Joint Australian Tsunami Warning Centre (JATWC), jointly operated 24 hours a day by the Bureau and GA detects, monitors, verifies and warns of any tsunami threat to the coastline of Australia and its offshore territories. The first stage of the tsunami warning process is a 'tsunami watch' phase, where seismologists have determined that there is the potential for an identified undersea earthquake to cause a tsunami threat to Australia.
The National Tsunami Watch may be reissued if a tsunami remains unconfirmed by sea level observations and any potential first point of impact on Australia is more than 90 minutes away (the minimum time criteria for warning). If sea level observations and further data confirm the tsunami threat, or if any potential first point of impact is less than 90 minutes away, the Bureau, on behalf of the JATWC, will use its severe weather communication infrastructure to issue Tsunami Warnings for the States and Territories under threat.
Once separate tsunami watches or warnings are being issued for individual States and Territories, a National Tsunami Warning Summary will also be issued listing all the watches, warnings and cancellations that are in effect for the current tsunami event. When the main threat has passed or if a tsunami didn't eventuate, the Bureau will issue a Tsunami Watch Cancellation or Tsunami Warning Cancellation. Tsunami Bulletins, Watches, Warnings, Cancellations and Event Summaries are part of a suite of warnings for severe weather events and hazards issued by the Bureau of Meteorology.

Media organisations across Australia work with the Bureau to also inform the public in the case of a tsunami event. Tsunami watches and warnings indicating the level of threat are issued for coastal zones around Australia and its offshore territories. In order to assist the community, tsunami threat levels in Regional Tsunami warnings are categorised into three levels with required community responses; these have been determined in consultation with emergency management authorities. No threat An undersea earthquake has been detected, however it has not generated a tsunami, or the tsunami poses no threat to Australia and its offshore territories. Marine and immediate foreshore threat Warning of potentially dangerous rips, waves and strong ocean currents in the marine environment and the possibility of only some localised overflow onto the immediate foreshore. Land inundation threatWarning for low-lying coastal areas of major land inundation, flooding, dangerous rips, waves and strong ocean currents. Do not go to the coast to watch the tsunami, as there is the possibility of dangerous, localised land inundation of the immediate foreshore.
Tsunami waves are more powerful than the same size beach waves, with the first wave not necessarily being the largest.
In the event of a tsunami warning for Australia for which you urgently need extra advice, please listen to your local radio and TV announcements for updates on the tsunami threat and emergency services messages or visit the Bureau's website. 211 is operated by a nonprofit organization under contract with the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (1-800-SAFENET is an alternate number for the same service).
Please listen to your local radio and TV announcements or call 1300 TSUNAMI (1300 878 6264) for latest warning information.
However the abnormal waves, tides and currents caused by even relatively small tsunami can be dangerous to swimmers and mariners. The Bureau's Regional Forecasting Centres (RFCs) in capital cities are the main liaison point for emergency services during tsunami events.
Tsunami Warning distribution lists are maintained at each of the Bureau's State and Territory RFCs.

These Threat Levels will be specified for the same coastal areas that are used for routine Bureau Coastal Waters Forecasts, already known to marine users. We hope this page of information will serve to help you understand what to do when you come across tsunami debris on our coastline.
Visitors and residents can call 211 (or 1-800-SAFENET) to report tsunami debris they see on the beach. Pacific coast all the time, so it’s very difficult to tell where the debris came from came from without unique identifying information. Structural and nonstructural measures had been implemented to mitigate tsunami damage based on past records of disasters, and these affected areas were known as some of the areas best prepared against tsunami disasters.Yoshihama village suffered serious damage in the 1933 tsunami. Significant changes in type and amount on a shoreline are an indicator that debris is from the tsunami.
A typical case of a successful evacuation was that of the students in Kamaishi City.The tsunami magnitude was exceeded the assumptions of design and caused the damages to the tsunami seawall. On the first term of the study period, the study team concentrates collecting pieces of information on disaster event for the purpose of understanding what actually happened. Subsequently, detailed analysis will be carried out in the second term of the study period using the research results and other information available.
Although the project study is corresponding pretty much to the primary phase of the strategy, we are looking at the contribution of our experiences and lessons learned from the disaster to international society. We hope that the project study will give some findings and outputs back to such international trend as well.

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