New simulation videos show what would happen to Washington’s coast if a Cascadia tsunami hits

Cascadia tsunami animation video, Cascadia tsunami animation video washington coast
Cascadia tsunami animation video for Washington coast

It has been 320 years since the last major earthquake hit the Cascadia subduction zone. The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) wants to help communities along Washington’s coast prepare for the next one.

On Jan. 26, 1700, an earthquake with an estimated magnitude of 9.0 struck the fault, causing the coastline to drop several feet and producing a tsunami that crashed onto land, leaving sand deposits and drowned forests.

Geological evidence shows these large quakes happen about every 250 years, which means one could happen at any time.

The DNR wants Washingtonians to be able to visualize what another tsunami could do to the state.

The department released a series of tsunami simulation videos that show the estimated height and speed of waves that would strike the southwest Washington coast following a magnitude 9.0 earthquake on the Cascadia subduction zone. Geologists at DNR, home to the Washington Geological Survey, produced the simulations using detailed tsunami models.

Tsunamis have struck Washington’s coast many times over our geologic history,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz. “It’s a question of when, not if, the next one will hit … These videos are designed to give the communities that would be most impacted by tsunamis a visualization of what areas are likely to face the most damage so they can make sure their residents, businesses and institutions are secure and resilient.

The videos show Cascadia tsunami wave simulations for the southwest Washington coast, with detailed, localized impacts shown for Grays Harbor and the Long Beach Peninsula, areas where damage from the tsunami in 1700 can still be seen.

For example, the simulations show what would happen to the Long Beach Peninsula. Less than 20 minutes after the earthquake started, the first wave would hit Long Beach. Minutes later, almost the entire peninsula would be under water. And the waves would keep coming.

The first wave reaches the outer coast in about 15-20 minutes depending on where you are and it quickly travels inland over land through the bays up the Columbia River,” said Corina Allen, chief hazards geologist with DNR. 

Allen said the waves would move up the Columbia River, but nothing more than a strong current would make it all the way to Portland.

The DNR said these simulations are designed to give emergency planners and communities the best possible visualized information about tsunami impacts and timing so they can plan accordingly.

Here some videos for Washington’s regions along the Cascadia Subduction Zone:

Grays Harbor

Willapa Bay


San Juan Islands

You will find a great documentary about the Cascade volcanoes rising like giants from the Earth in this part of the US by clicking on the image below:

Tsunamis have hit Washington in the past, and they will happen again in the future. More information about these simulations on the DNR’s website and KGW. More tsunami and Cascadia news on Strange Sounds and Steve Quayle.

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  1. People are hungry for truth news info Only at Steve quayle, Strange sounds, and Jason A, Stan deyo, top 10 only. Of course others also but we only trust these web sites always at 1st instinct. Followed by dilymail in UK. Truth shall make us set free.
    I already predicted more blood shed coming and the PDX is in hell. Martial Law coming before election?
    Disclaimer always apply

  2. They covered the Tsunami very well. Also remember the magnitude 9.0 EQ will shatter and destroy many buildings and homes before the tsunami hits!! I remember about 5 or 6 years ago we got hit with a 4.9 in our area and our home shook BIG TIME!!

  3. Obviously they believe anything North of Bellingham isn’t going to be in any trouble or they just don’t matter.

  4. Get out of big cities now while you can or it will come a time all cities in the world already are center of storms. ??

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