No evacuations in Sooke Region after tsunami warning

Biggest issue? People panicking prematurely, fire chief says

A tsunami warning issued following a 7.9 earthquake in Alaska early Tuesday resulted in no evacuations in the Sooke Region, officials say.

The warning was issued shortly after 1:30 a.m., and Emergency B.C. was warning anyone in the affected areas to evacuate, which included the Juan de Fuca Strait coast, the outer west coast of Vancouver Island, the central coast and northeast Vancouver Island, and the north coast and Haida Gwaii..

However, at 4:30 a.m., an urgent message from Emergency Management B.C. stated that all warnings for coastal B.C. had been cancelled.

Sooke Fire Chief Kenn Mount said the local emergency operations centre , the fire department, RCMP, and amateur radio operators were notified about 30 minutes after the warning was issued.

“The response was excellent from our fire department,” Mount said, adding 26 personnel answered the call out.

The biggest issue throughout the night was people panicking prematurely and “non-credible” information getting out through social media, he said.

The situation tenuous throughout the night as a car fire was reported on Connie Road and fire alarms sounded in an apartment complex.

The fire department responded to five key areas in Sooke: Kaltasin, Whiffin Spit, West Coast Road and Coopers Cove. Residents were asked to stay away from beaches and marine infrastructure.

”Our presence was well respected out in the community once we had units out there just to provide information with what we were doing,” Mount said.

No evacuation orders were issued in key areas of the Juan de Fuca Electoral Area, said Capital Regional District director Mike Hicks, but there was an unconfirmed report of an evacuation order in East Sooke.

Last year Port Renfrew’s capability to transmit early warnings of a possible tsunami was bolstered with a new high-tech system. The tsunami sirens were not used for this incident, Hicks said.

But the amount of calls CRD officials received due to tsunami fears has convinced Hicks that the next time a warning is issued by B.C. Emergency, the system will be initiated and evacuations are likely to occur.

In other areas of the Island, residents in low-lying areas received evacuation notices, including those living in Colwood, Esquimalt, Saanich, Viw Royal, Port Alberni and Tofino, until the tsunami warning was lifted.



editor@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

‘Blue Monday’ isn’t real, but depression can be

CMHA encourages people to prioritize their mental health

Sooke Potholes viewing area likely to remain closed

Report says that more rockslides likely in the area

Residents push back on downtown Victoria tree removal

The birch tree at the Wharf-Government intersection will be removed to make way for bike lanes

Toronto Arrows players take aim at youth rugby clinic

Juan de Fuca team offers get acquainted clinics

Husband of slain RCMP officer ‘disgusted and disheartened’ by parole board

Killer of Const. Sarah Beckett allowed limited day parole for alcohol treatment

UPDATE: B.C. legislature managers accused of excessive travel, personal expense claims

Clerk Craig James, security chief Gary Lenz call allegations ‘completely false’

B.C. man fined $10,000 after leaving moose to suffer before death

Surrey man was convicted last week on three Wildlife Act charges

Anti-pipeline group wants NEB to consider impact of emissions, climate change

Stand.earth filed NEB motion asking to apply same standard to the project as it did with Energy East pipeline

B.C. man charged in 2014 snake venom death of toddler

Henry Thomas was taking care of the North Vancouver girl the day before she died

B.C.’s largest public-sector union wants inquiry into money laundering, drugs

Union officials say Premier John Horgan and Attorney General David Eby have not ruled out the possibility of a public inquiry

Teen in confrontation with Native American: I didn’t provoke

Nick Sandmann of Covington Catholic High School said he was trying to defuse the situation

Suspect allegedly armed with handgun robs Island gas station

Incident occurred Sunday night in Nanaimo

MARS seeing influx of sick, injured eagles from north part of Vancouver Island

Factors for increase in eagle cases can be anything from lead poisoning to vehicle strikes

Kamala Harris opens U.S. presidential bid in challenge to Trump

The 54-year old portrayed herself as a fighter for justice, decency and equality in a video distributed by her campaign

Most Read