Tsunami advisory: Long Beach residents monitor water levels
Boaters and fishermen were on tsunami watch Friday morning in Long Beach, monitoring closely as the water levels rose and fell quickly, but gently, along docks and pylons. The concern is that more dramatic tidal surges that could jostle their vessels.
A police helicopter flew above, using loudspeakers to warn people to evacuate the coastline. Passengers could be seen leaving the docked cruise ship Carnival Paradise. Larger boats, such as the ferries that shuttle visitors to Catalina Island, gathered just outside the harbor to keep a safe distance from their moorings, where they could be rocked by tsunami-related currents.
If the water level rises or falls too quickly -- as it has during ripple effects from past tsunamis -- it could cause boats in Shoreline Marina to knock into their docks or float loose from their moorings, explained Jeff Bundy, 60, who lives aboard his 41-foot sailboat.
As a precaution he's taken steps to tie down his boat and place bumpers around it. Just after 9:30, he watched as a current caused water levels dropped two to three feet within 15 minutes as it rushed seaward at the outlet of the Los Angeles River -- much faster than normal tidal changes.
"It's really moving," he said.
"With the tide coming in at noon, I've done everything I can do in case we get a lot of surging," he said.
Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster issued a statement saying the city's coastline remains under tsunami advisory following the Japan quake.
"While we expect the effects of the tsunami to be minimal, tidal currents will be dangerous and the event may last as long as 10 hours," he said.
-- Tony Barboza
Map shows location of Long Beach. Credit: Mapping L.A.