An examination of the June 2013 East Coast meteotsunami captured by NOAA observing systems
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An examination of the June 2013 East Coast meteotsunami captured by NOAA observing systems

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  • Description:
    "On June 13, 2013, a weakening low-end derecho exited eastward off the New Jersey coastline around 15:00 UTC. Three to five hours later, tsunami-like waves were observed in Barnegat Inlet, NJ and Falmouth Harbor, MA despite clear skies and calm weather. The United States Geological Survey as well as the National Tsunami Warning Center suggested that these waves were generated by a meteorological source. Meteotsunamis are tsunami-like waves of meteorological origin, rather than of seismic origin. The storm had triggered an ocean wave that traveled eastward and reflected off the continental shelf break, causing waves to propagate back to the U.S. East Coast. A huge area was affected, and several NOAA water level stations located along the New Jersey and New England coasts as well as in Bermuda and Puerto Rico captured the meteotsunami oscillations. This report describes the storm that caused the meteotsunami and examines the wave characteristics using high-frequency detided water level data from the NOAA stations. These stations are located in bays and inlets as well as the open coast, and show how the impact varied along the U.S. coastline. Observations from a NOAA buoy located east of the shelf break are also examined along with output from adjusted Tsunami Warning Center models (from other NOAA studies) to illustrate the complexity and timing of the event. Recent research funded by a NOAA grant for developing a meteotsunami warning program revealed that East Coast meteotsunamis are relatively common, and that the coast is at a higher risk of a meteotsunami than a tsunami. Numerous case studies are being used to develop potential methods for meteotsunami forecasting, although quantitative forecasts/warnings are a challenge based on the complexity of these events. Regardless, as a result of the NOAA grant local weather forecast offices have been able to identify atmospheric conditions conducive to meteotsunami formation and have included warnings for potential surges in area forecasts"--Executive Summary.
  • Content Notes:
    Kathleen Bailey, Christopher DiVeglio, Ashley Welty.

    "November 2014."

    System requirements: Adobe Acrobat Reader.

    Includes bibliographical references (pages 40-42).

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