How can a tsunami be prevented?
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Q:

How can a tsunami be prevented?

A:

Quick Answer

No known way to prevent a tsunami from occurring exists. Individuals can take steps to be prepared for a tsunami, and warning systems can help get people out of harm's way if an impending tsunami is predicted.

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Full Answer

A warning system that monitors the Pacific Basin for activity that can set off a tsunami is already in place, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association. The system is operated via two centers — one in Alaska and another in Hawaii.

If activity that suggests a tsunami is forming is detected, NOAA issues a warning for coastal communities where there is a potential for impact.

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Related Questions

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    What is a tsunami?

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    A tsunami is a series of waves generated by a disturbance on the ocean floor. This disturbance can be caused by earthquakes, landslides, volcanic eruptions, explosions or meteorites. The waves have very long wavelengths, which can travel hundreds of miles across the ocean. As the waves reach the continental shelf, they can grow to be several meters in height and cause extensive destruction along the coastline.

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    Can we prevent a tsunami?

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    A tsunami is a natural geohazard that is almost impossible to prevent from forming or occurring. Though it cannot be prevented, damage from a tsunami can be reduced through sophisticated early warning systems, effective response and community preparedness. The United Nations Environment Program also suggests that tsunamis cause less damage in areas where there are natural tsunami barriers, such as coastal vegetation, coral reefs and mangroves.

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    What happens after a tsunami hits?

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    After the initial wave hits land, a large wall of water follows closely behind it. The water slams into the land, then immediately begins to recede, taking many objects on land with it.

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    When a tsunami occurs, it's typically in response to an earthquake, and oceanic waves grow to large proportions, increasing their rate of causing damage. Other natural earth forces can cause tsunamis as well, including meteorites, landslides, explosions and a volcano erupting, according to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology or BOM.

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