Tuesday, May 17, 2022

NSW beaches closed after tsunami alert

Waves more than one metre high have been recorded on Australia’s east coast, after a massive underwater volcano erupted near Tonga in the Pacific.
While several tsunami marine alerts have now been cancelled on Australia’s east coast the Bureau of Meteorology said it had detected large waves and the NSW SES said beaches across the state would stay closed.
Bureau of Meteorology Meteorologist Sarah Scully said a wave of 1.27m was recorded on Norfolk Island.
The Gold Coast saw a wave 87cm high, and Twofold Bay near Eden in NSW had a 77cm wave.
“So an enormous amount of energy was released by the volcanic eruption, and that was trapped by the oceans. So it travelled thousands of kilometres to impact not just the East Coast of Australia but many nations throughout the Pacific Ocean,” she said.
Beaches were closed this morning from the Sunshine Coast to the New South Wales border, after a violent eruption, which was seen from space and heard as far away as Alaska over 9000km away.
Warnings in Tasmania, Victoria and Queensland and Macquarie Island are no longer in effect, a Bureau of Meteorology spokesperson said.
However, warnings remain in effect for New South Wales, Lord Howe Island and Norfolk Island.
The BoM said there is the possibility of dangerous rips, strong ocean currents and some localised overflow onto the immediate foreshore.
“While evacuations are not necessary for marine threat areas, people in these areas are advised to get out of the water and move away from the immediate water’s edge,” the BoM said.
NSW SES Assistant Commissioner, Sean Kearns, said the public must stay clear of the water.
“The surf conditions will likely remain hazardous well into tomorrow,” Mr Kearns said.
“There is also a chance we could experience severe weather this afternoon, which could only add further dangers,” he said.
Last night Bondi Beach was evacuated around 10:30pm, with police and SES calling everyone off the beach and away from the ocean.
This morning Bondi Beach was briefly open, with regular surf safety flags put out for swimmers, but the flags were soon taken down with everyone discouraged from entering the sea.
NSW SES Assistant Commissioner, Sean Kearns, said the public must stay clear of the water.
“The surf conditions will likely remain hazardous well into tomorrow,” Mr Kearns said.
“There is also a chance we could experience severe weather this afternoon, which could only add further dangers,” he said.
Last night Bondi Beach was evacuated around 10:30pm, with police and SES calling everyone off the beach and away from the ocean.
This morning Bondi Beach was briefly open, with regular surf safety flags put out for swimmers, but the flags were soon taken down with everyone discouraged from entering the sea.
Nippers and an Ironman series event set to take place at the Sydney beach today were cancelled.
“Can I just ask everybody to please follow the instructions of the SES, of surf lifesaving,” Premier Dominic Perrottet said.
“Beaches are closed, please do not swim.”
The Bureau of Meteorology is monitoring potential threats, and State Emergency Services (SES) Commissioner Carlene York said she expected beaches to be closed until 4pm (AEST).
She anticipated a 1.1-metre tsunami wave recorded at Lord Howe Island would eventually hit NSW.
Lord Howe Island also experienced unusual currents and waves, according to reports.

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