HomeNewsTonga Volcano Eruption: See How the Shockwave Impacted North Carolina

Tonga Volcano Eruption: See How the Shockwave Impacted North Carolina

by Courtney Blackann
SAN FRANCISCO, CA, USA - JANUARY 15: Ocean beach is seen in San Francisco, California, United States on January 15, 2022 as tsunami alert issued after Tonga volcanic eruption. The volcano, located 65-kilometers north of Tonga capital Nuku'alofa, had begun spewing ash, steam and gas Friday morning. (Photo by Burak Arik/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

A massive volcano eruption in the South Pacific sent shockwaves thousands of miles away. And one study of where the aftershocks hit is on display on a map of North Carolina. On Saturday, the massive volcano – which lays underwater – violently erupted, causing tsunami warnings across the ocean to the west coast of the United States. But several states felt the aftershocks of the event. This includes North Carolina.

In a Twitter post, a meteorologist shared a map of the different points of North Carolina affected by the volcano eruption. It displays a video of how the state felt aftershocks following the Saturday eruption.

“Early this morning, a volcano erupted in violent fashion 7250 miles away in the South Pacific. Around 9 AM EST, the shockwave arrived in North Carolina, crossing the state from west to east at roughly 740 mph. Here’s how the pressure wave traversed the state via @NCSCO stations,” he captioned the photo.

Many people commented on the post, expressing their concern and awe at the display. From New Zealand and Australia all the way to the west coast of the States, people were receiving warnings about the possibility of a tsunami.

“I feel like this should be a MUCH bigger story than what’s being talked about. How long will it be before more will be known about the long-term effects on the planet? If any,” one person writes.

Another agrees, saying, “OK, now this is pretty awesome. Shockwave from the volcano eruption traveled around the world and crossed NC (and VA) at around 9am.”

Volcano Aftermath

Further, the Australian foreign minister released a statement following the eruption about the people of Tonga.

“Thoughts are with the people of #Tonga tonight in the aftermath of the volcanic eruption & tsunami,” Australian foreign minister Marise Payne wrote on Twitter Saturday, per the Washington Post, adding that Australia “stands ready to provide support to our Pacific family.”

Many of the tsunami advisories for the west coast were canceled several hours after they were initially sent. However, there are still some good tips to know about volcano safety and readiness.

According to weather.gov, there are certain things to look out for in case of a volcanic eruption.

“Impacts from ashfall depend on distance from the volcano. Physical properties of the ash, the amount of ashfall, and the readiness of a community to respond. Communities near volcanoes are at the greatest risk for ashfall although it can be a problem hundreds of miles from a volcano after a major eruption. Volcanic ash is abrasive, making it an irritant to eyes and lungs,” the website warns.

“Ashfall can cause minor to major damage to vehicles and buildings, contaminate water supplies, disrupt sewage and electrical systems, and damage or kill vegetation. After ashfall, affected airports must be closed until ash is removed because of its hazard to jet engines. Roads near the volcano may be impassable until cleared. NWS Weather Forecast Offices (WFO) collaborate with VAACs and other state and federal agencies to issue ashfall advisories and warnings.”