Tsunamis are not as common as other weather related disasters, but they can cause significant damage. The word tsunami comes from a Japanese word meaning "long harbor wave.” Today, scientist use the term to define seismic sea waves generated by undersea earthquakes or undersea landslides and volcanic eruptions. Most tsunamis occur along the Ring of Fire, a wave of volcanic and earthquake activity that encircles the Pacific Ocean. The Hawaiian Islands and Alaska areas are common for this type of disaster. Tsunami waves have long lengths and travel very fast in deep water. Upon reaching the shore, the speed of the wave decreases, but the height increases dramatically causing massive damage to coastlines. The Tsunami Warning System has helped in warning people of these disasters, but more research and technology is needed to improve the predictions of this natural disaster.
Tsunami is not a common term for people living on the East Coast, but the term poses a fear for those living close to the Pacific Ocean. The word Tsunami comes from a Japanese word meaning "long harbor wave.” Scientist to describe a seismic sea wave generated by an undersea earthquake or an undersea landslide (Encarta) also uses the term. A violent submarine volcanic eruption can create enough force to uplift the water and generate a tsunami. Generally, tsunamis formed by submarine landslides and volcanic eruptions dissipate quickly and rarely effect coastlines unlike the Pacific-wide tsunamis caused by earthquakes (Tsunamis). Tsunamis can savagely attack coastlines, causing devastating property damage and loss of life.
Earthquakes are a typical cause of violent tsunamis in the Pacific Ocean. Tectonic earthquakes are a particular type of earthquake caused by the earth's crustial deformation. When these earthquakes occur beneath the sea, the water above is displaced from its natural position. Waves are formed as the water tries to return to its original position because of the influence of gravity.