- Open Access
Tsunami heights and damage along the Myanmar coast from the December 2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake
Earth, Planets and Space volume 58, pages243–252(2006)
The tsunami heights from the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake were between 0.4 and 2.9 m along the Myanmar coast, according to our post tsunami survey at 22 sites in Ayeyarwaddy Delta and the Taninthayi coast. Interviews to coastal residents indicate that the tsunami heights were lower than high tide level in rainy season, probably by storm surge. They also testified that the arrival times were between 2 and 5.5 hours after the earthquake but the reliability may be low because nobody felt ground shaking. Much smaller tsunami than the neighboring Thai coast, where the tsunami heights were 5 to 20 m, explains relatively slighter tsunami damage in Myanmar; the casualties were reported as 71, compared to about 8300 in Thailand. The smaller tsunami was probably due to the fact that the main tsunami source did not extend to Andaman Islands. The tsunami travel times and maximum heights computed from a 700 km long source are basically consistent with the observations. For a nearby tsunami source, the tsunami hazard would be more significant in Myanmar, because coastal houses are unprotected for tsunamis and no infrastructure exists to disseminate tsunami warning information.
Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission, Post-tsunami Survey Field Guide, Manuals and Guides No. 37, 62 pp., UNESCO, 1998.
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, World Disasters Report, 246 pp., Kumarian Press, 2005.
Lay, T., H. Kanamori, C. J. Ammon, M. Nettles, S. N. Ward, R. C. Aster, S. L. Beck, S. L. Bilek, M. R. Brudzinski, R. Butler, H. R. DeShon, G. Ekström, K. Satake, and S. Sipkin, The Great Sumatra-Andaman Earthquake of 26 December 2004, Science, 308, 1127–1133, 2005.
Matsutomi, H., T. Takahashi, M. Matsuyama, K. Harada, T. Hiraishi, S. Supartid, and S. Naksuksakul, The 2004 Off Sumatra Earthquake Tsunami and Damage at Khao Lak and Phuket Island in Thailand, Annual J. Coastal Engineering, JSCE, 52, 1356–1360, 2005 (in Japanese).
Satake, K., Tsunamis, in International Handbook of Earthquake and Engineering Seismology, edited by W. H. K. Lee, H. Kanamori, P. C. Jennings, and C. Kisslinger, 81A, 437–451, 2002.
Satake, K., Y. Okamura, M. Shishikura, Than Tin Aung, and K. Fujima, Tsunami field survey along Thai coast from the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake, Annual Report on Active Fault and Paleoearthquake Researches, Geological Survey of Japan/AIST, No. 5, 161–188, 2005.
Smith, W. H. F. and D. T. Sandwell, Global sea floor topography from satellite altimetry and ship depth soundings, Science, 277, 1956–1962, 1997.
Tsuji, Y., Y Namegaya, H. Matsumoto, S.-I. Iwasaki, W. Kanbua, M. Sriwichai, and V. Meesuk, The 2004 Indian tsunami in Thailand: Surveyed runup heights and tide gauge records, Earth Planets Space, 58, this issue, 223–232, 2006.
United Kingdom Hydrographic Office, Admiralty Tide Tables, Voume 3: Indian Ocean & South China Sea (including Tidal Stream Tables), 2004.
About this article
Cite this article
Satake, K., Aung, T.T., Sawai, Y. et al. Tsunami heights and damage along the Myanmar coast from the December 2004 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake. Earth Planet Sp 58, 243–252 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1186/BF03353384
- Sumatra-Andaman earthquake
- field survey
- Andaman Sea