Small tsunami waves seen in B.C. after Chile earthquake: expert
A deadly earthquake that forced the evacuation of more than one-million people in Chile has been observed in a much smaller way on the West Coast of B.C.
A tsunami expert said waves generated by the magnitude-8.3 quake arrived at Tofino and further north in Winter Harbour and Haida Gwaii at around 8 a.m. Thursday.
The tallest wave measured a paltry 10 centimetres at Winter Harbour, according to Richard Thomson, an ocean researcher with the DFO.
The waves took about 16 hours to travel to the coast and moved nearly as fast as a commercial jetliner.
“If you were on a jet plane, if you could see the wave, it would be keeping up with you at jet-like speeds across the Pacific,” Thomson said.
Rumbles were felt across South American following the powerful earthquake, which killed at least 10 people and flooded several coastal towns.
A tsunami warning was issued along the nation’s entire Pacific coast and the quake also sparked an advisory for part of coastal California and Hawaii.
No advisory was issued for B.C.
Thomson said even though the wave height observed in B.C. was very small, currents generated by the earthquake could be much stronger and felt in coves and narrow water passages here.
He also said it's not unusual to see small tsunami waves on the B.C. coast following earthquake events, like the 2011 Tohoku earthquake off the coast of Japan.