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Small waves from tsunami likely to hit California on Friday morning; beaches might be cleared

March 11, 2011 | 12:33 am
Click for the latest information from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center
Officials said California could see small waves  Friday morning resulting from the 8.9 magnitude earthquake in Japan.

Cindi Preller of the West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center told Fox 11 News that the tsunami could cause some unusually high tides but not major inundations.

It's possible that officials will ask that beaches be cleared as a precaution. She added that the situation on the California coast might be similar to the aftermath of last year's Chile quake. That quake caused some small waves but caused no major damage.

Officials said the tsunami-related waves would occur in Santa Monica at 8:39 a.m. and in Newport Beach at 8:45 a.m.

The latest alerts cover Japan, Russia, many Asian countries and Pacific islands, including Hawaii as well as many South and Central American countries such as Chile, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru and Colombia.

In Hawaii, officials expect a wave could hit at 2:59 a.m. Hawaii time (4:59 a.m. PST).


Magnitude 8.9 earthquake rocks Japan

Tsunami warning includes Hawaii

PHOTOS: Scenes from the 8.9 magnitude earthquake and its aftermath

-- Shelby Grad, Rong-Gong Lin II and Jill-Marie Jones

Image credit: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration