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Chilean Earthquake and Tsunami - April 2, 2014

Amateur radio operators throughout Hawaii responded to the tsunami caused by the earthquake off of , Chile that occured on April 1, 2014.

Activities are chronicled here. It's not a question of "If", it's a question of "When".

Enjoy, and feel free to drop me an e-mail if you have any questions.


Amateur radio operators responded to the needs around the tsunami advisory issued by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center following the magnitude 8.2 earthquake 95 kilometers Northwest of Iquique, Chile.

The earthquake occurred at 1:46:46 pm on Tuesday, April 1, 2014 Hawaii Standard Time. Kevin AH6QO notified Ron AH6RH of the event at 2:02 pm as Kevin was preparing to head to work. Ron initiated key phone calls, then started a radio watch net on the linked State-wide and Oahu-wide RACES VHF/UHF repeater system at 2:15 pm. No check-ins were taken due to the long wave arrival times from a Chilean tsunami.

The radio watch net consisted of bulletins directed to the amateur radio community of the earthquake. As the estimated time of arrival of the tsunami wave became available, that information was added to the bulletin. The bulletin was given every ten minutes for the first hour. If emergency situations were to occur to portable or mobile stations, the resources of the watch net would be available at that time.

Information for the bulletins were taken from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center bulletins for Hawaii. At 3:44 pm, information from tidal gauges in Chile were added to the bulletin. Gauges measured a six foot wave. The radio watch net passed along status information that the tsunami was still under evaluation. At 5:45 pm, PTWC issued a tsunami advisory, indicating that sea level changes could be expected that would affect swimmers, boaters and others near the shoreline but that the need for coastal evacuations was not necessary. PTWC continue to send out supplements to the original tsunami advisories.

SCD RACES and DEM RACES were not activated for the event. The watch net ended periodic bulletins at 10:00 pm, and radio silence was observed. Peter KH6JBS monitored from 11:00 pm to 3:10 am for activity.

Ron AH6RH resumed the watch net at 3:10 am. Clem KH7HO and Jack KH6DQ were on standby as additional net control stations. Todd WH6DWF reported waves at 3:18 am, 3:28 am and 3:29 am at Waikiki Beach, at Kalakaua Ave and Kapahulu Ave, across the street from Lulu's. The wave heights reported were between one and one-and-a-half feet.

Bill KH6KV at Sunset Beach at North Shore around 3:30 am reported that wave height changes were hard to detect in the existing surf. The area was dark.

The reports were submitted to the State Warning Point. The radio net was secured at 4:32 am.

The ARRL reported on the event via their web page.

The NOAA / PMEL / Center for Tsunami Research has a web page with forecast products and results for this event.

A reminder: Being prepared is a personal responsibility. Being aware of emergency response and recovery procedures before an incident is also a personal responsibility. See: Personal Preparation

The quake occurred with the usual coinciding of the new moon. The moon was 5% full; 2 days, 7 hours, 42 minutes old. The sun and moon were within sight of Chile, exerting tidal forces on the crust of the Earth. Note that the Magnitude 8.1 Unimak Island earthquake in Alaska on also occurred on a new moon.

Moon phase during the Chilean 2014 quake, 5% Moon view of earth

Moon image courtesy of the BMDO/NASA's Clementine satellite, Earth image courtesy of the NASA Earth Observatory and computation courtesy of Fourmilab.

Spaceweather.com has an archived web page showing the condition of the sun that day. There were a few sunspots, a sunspot number of 129 and only an M1 class solar flare in the 24 hours prior to the earthquake.

Maui News Reporting

April 2, 2014

These are links to articles from Maui News.

Find out more by contacting:  rhashiro(remove this part)@hawaiiantel.net
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Updated: April 7, 2014

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