"This is Chrys Fey reporting for Disaster 5 News. I am at Dungeness Spit Lighthouse where a tsunami hit yesterday morning. I have Tyrean Martinson with me, a survivor of the tsunami. Tyrean, can you tell our viewers what happened, and how you survived?"
'Yes, I can Chrys. We were hiking on Dungeness Spit when we felt the quake. My family and I struggled to stay standing.
Dungeness Spit view from the air - wikimedia commons - photo taken by Nat Bocking
We were a quarter mile from the lighthouse, and when the earthquake ended, we ran towards it since it was closer than the shoreline.
Attribution: Steven Pavlov [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
One of the volunteer lighthouse keepers told us to get inside. Huge waves rolled in from the ocean. The lighthouse is only thirty feet tall. I wasn’t sure it was tall enough.We prayed. I didn’t know what the lighthouse keeper volunteers believed in, and it didn’t matter. We all just prayed.
There were still hikers on the spit, and they were too far away to make it to the lighthouse when the waves hit. Some of them ran to the inland side, which is a refuge for seals, but the waves crashed over all of them. I didn’t have time to do anything but pray for them and us.
The waves were at least ten feet tall and the lighthouse took a beating, shaking and shuddering around us. We just kept praying and crying, and praying.
Finally, it stopped. We are still alive.We’ve been helping the lighthouse volunteers and the rescue workers search for survivors on the spit. I'm so thankful that I remembered some of those old tsunami drill videos from my school days. That knowledge helped us survive because I knew that we only had fifteen minutes to get to some kind of high ground between the quake and the first waves."
I had a lot of fun writing this fictional interview. To learn more about The Dungeness Spit, the Lighhouse Keeper program, and Tsunamis on the Washington Coast, click on the links. I live further down the Peninsula - towards the narrow end of the Puget Sound, so we have a lot of land mass protection from tsunamis. After writing this and reading more about "The Really Big One" (earthquake) we could have, I was reminded to check our emergency supplies. I don't think about it much since I used to live near Mt. Rainier - in the potential mud and lava flow zone, so I think of earthquakes as somewhat bland (yes, I've been doing earthquake drills since I was in kindergarten), and I live outside the tsunami zone, so I often don't think of that. The reality is, if the "big one" hit us, our 60 year old house would probably collapse. If we survived, we would have to either live at my parent's house next-door - a steel, earthquake proof structure - or in a tent with our emergency supplies. If the tsunami was huge enough to cross the mountainous (non-volcanic) peninsula to where I live or hurled water down the Puget Sound, our house is on a ridge about a half-mile above sea level. We own a very small power-boat, two old camping canoes, a racing kayak and a racing canoe so we have some possibility of movement/travel if everything is water-logged. The Narrows airport is a half-mile uphill near us, and has earthquake proof buildings, so that would also provide possible shelter and an evacuation route. The bridges near us would probably go down if we had a 9.0 earthquake although the newest one might survive. Most people I know have some emergency supplies tucked away - it's part of life in an earthquake zone. I don't know if I know how to live any other way. However, I think I'm running low on bottled water, so I should probably go get some.
Oh, and this is a fun video to show visitors who might come to our house. It's the original bridge and this is just what some wind did to it. They built the next one and the newest one with a bit more planning.
Title: Tsunami Crimes
Series: Disaster Crimes #3
Author: Chrys Fey
Page Count: 272
BLURB: Beth and Donovan have come a long way from Hurricane Sabrina and the San Francisco earthquake. Now they are approaching their wedding day and anxiously waiting to promise each other a lifetime of love. The journey down the aisle isn’t smooth, though, as they receive threats from the followers of the notorious criminal, Jackson Storm. They think they’ll be safe in Hawaii, but distance can’t stop these killers. Not even a tsunami can.
This monstrous wave is the most devastating disaster Beth has ever faced. It leaves her beaten, frightened. Is she a widow on her honeymoon? As she struggles to hold herself together and find Donovan, she’s kidnapped by Jackson's men.
Fearing her dead, Donovan searches the rubble and shelters with no luck. The thought of her being swept out to sea is almost too much for him to bear, but the reality is much worse. She’s being used as bait to get him to fall into a deadly trap.
If they live through this disaster, they may never be the same again.
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