What is and how is it formed:
The Japanese word “Tsunami” means “Harbor Wave”. A tsunami is a huge wave in the ocean that develops as a result of an earthquake. It can reach a height of 30 to 50 meters. A tsunami can travel even faster than an airplane or a jet. This powerful wall of water reaches the coast and can cause a lot of damage.
Usually it is an underwater earthquake that causes a tsunami to develop. This happen when the plates underneath the earth’s surface move to that one slips under another.
From deep in the ocean the energy of the earthquake causes the water level to rise above sea level. Gravity causes the water to spread into a wave that travels at an incredible speed and with an amazing power.
A tsunami gets bigger as it gets closer to shore. When it hits shallow water the huge wave travels more slowly. The water from along the shore moves into the ocean, and then the massive wave crashes into the shore and keeps travelling inland.
Nature’s warning signs before forming a tsunami:
- The ground rumbles a lot likes earthquake.
- The sea suddenly pulls back and leaves bare sand, making the beach seem a lot larger.
- Animals may behave strangely and they may suddenly leave or try to move any place that they normally would not go.