Nach Ausbruch eines Untersee-Vulkans: Wellen überfluten Küstenortschaften in Tonga

15 Jan. 2022 12:00 o’clock

It was not without reason that the Tonga authorities issued a tsunami warning following the eruption of the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai volcano. Videos show big waves pounding the coast of the South Pacific island nation. So far there have been no reports of possible victims.

An undersea volcano erupted near the island nation of Tonga on Friday. The Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai ejected ash, steam and gas up to 20 kilometers into the air. South Pacific authorities issued a tsunami warning. Coastal residents have been urged to take to high ground or stay at home. Tonga’s geological authority also warned of possible acid rain in the region.

Meanwhile, videos from Tonga showing big waves hitting the shore have been circulating on the internet.

Some videos show people trying to escape the waves in cars.

Flooded streets and partially destroyed buildings can be seen in some of the recordings. There are no reports of possible victims.

According to media reports, Tonga’s King Tupou VI. brought to safety from the royal palace in the capital Nuku’alofa. According to the Australian Meteorological Agency, a 1.2 meter high wave was observed in the city. The authorities of other Pacific countries also issued tsunami warnings, including Fiji, Samoa and New Zealand.

The Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai is located about 30 kilometers southeast of the Tonga island of Fonuafo’ou. The activities of the volcano started already in December. However, the latest eruption was seven times more powerful than the last eruption, according to the Tonga Geology Agency.

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