Is New Jersey prepared in the event of a tsunami?

Posted: Updated:
JERSEY SHORE -

A tsunami warning issued by police departments along the Jersey Shore had some residents on edge.

The warning turned out to be a false alarm – but it left many New Jerseyans wondering if the Garden State is prepared for a tsunami or even if such an event is possible on the East Coast.

Rutgers professor Dr. Ken Miller says that tsunamis on the East Coast are rare compared to the threat potential on the West Coast.

“We don't have a basinwide tsunami warning system like we have in the Pacific or even the Indian Ocean,” he says.

RELATED: No cause for alarm: Tsunami warning alert mistakenly sent out by police 
RELATED: Strong storms created 'meteotsunami' off Jersey coast 

But Miller says that a landslide in Africa could send a tsunami toward New Jersey.

“Chances of a large tsunami in the Atlantic are quite, quite rare…Given that still, having some kind of warning system in place might be prudent,” he says.

On March 16, 2018, New Jersey experienced a “meteotsunami,” which was actually caused by the weather. It created a 1-foot high tsunami wave.

A 15-feet high tsunami wave could find its way as far as 5 miles inland in some of the lower-lying parts of New Jersey.

The only town in the state with a tsunami plan in place in Manasquan.

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