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Tsunami warning: California harbors send big boats out to sea, secure moorings

March 11, 2011 |  7:40 am

The tsunami warning has officials at local harbors and marinas preparing for a wave from the devastating Japan earthquake that's expected to hit the California coast Friday beginning at 8 a.m.

At King Harbor in Redondo Beach, officials have been moving larger boats out of the marina to keep them from causing damage should they be rocked about. They are also securing smaller boats in case wave action sends them smashing against docks, said Leslie Page, general manager of the Redondo Beach marina.

PHOTOS: Scenes from the 8.9 magnitude earthquake and its aftermath

The U.S. Coast Guard said it does not expect major flooding but it is urging boat owners to to double up all mooring lines.

Videos of the earthquake

"The Coast Guard urges boaters to not get underway and check with their local harbor masters to ensure a marina evacuation has not been ordered," officials said in a statement. "Significant widespread inundation is not expected for areas under advisory. Currents may be hazardous to swimmers, boats, and coastal structures, and may continue for several hours after the arrival of the initial wave."

The last tsunami in California occurred last year after the Chile earthquake. There was no flooding, and many didn't even notice the wave, but some boats were damaged.

At the Seal Beach Naval Weapons Station, officials sent one Navy boat out to sea.


No reports of damage in Laguna Beach

Tsunami: Huntington Beach on alert for potential damage

Tsunami causes significant damage in Crescent City, Santa Cruz; high tide coming

-- Andrew Blankstein and Shelby Grad