The Science Behind Tsunamis: An Overview of the Sri Lanka Disaster Infographic
As powerful as a hydrogen bomb, tsunamis are deadly and rare. They often start off below the earth’s crust as a quake, but have been known to also originate from underground volcanoes and coastal landslides. The tsunami itself is a result of the energy from the quake rolling across the ocean floor, and creating massive waves.This much power in a single wave is enough to destroy life on land for several miles inland, and the average tsunami consists of several powerful waves. This is exactly what happened in Sri Lanka.
There were no early warning signals for the residents of Sri Lanka that were affected by the disaster, and scientists are now looking to put a monitoring system in place to prevent loss of life at such a large scale. This tsunami sensing network would be located in the Indian ocean, and would be operated by top scientists and trained workers.
Being able to detect a tsunami ahead of time will help to save lives, but more resources are needed to figure out a way to save cities and towns. With the power that a tsunami brings, currently there’s not much that can be done to protect structures from it’s force. There are millions of people residing in coastal areas, and moving farther inland would be the only answer for ensuring the survival of their infrastructures at the present moment. Until that happens, early warning signals are the best tools available to save human lives.