tsunami

Renee Gross, KBBI News

Wednesday was the very first national test of the Wireless Emergency Alert System, and there are reports that some phones in Alaska and across the country did not receive the test message. State and federal officials are now working to sort out the kinks.

Millions of Americans’ phones made a strange noise Wednesday as the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, tested the Wireless Emergency Alert System. But some phones did not go off, including here at KBBI.

Renee Gross, KBBI News

Homer’s emergency management officials gathered on Thursday for a debrief on the tsunami warning earlier this week. Officials agreed the evacuation went well as residents heeded the warning. But Fire Chief Bob Painter said there was still talk of what could be approved upon. 

"One of the things that we wish we would've had done was to early on appoint a public information officer for the city that could better track the incoming and outgoing information during the event rather than us trying to do that in-house," he said. 

Aaron Bolton, KBBI News

When a powerful 7.9 magnitude earthquake in the Gulf of Alaska hit early Tuesday morning, it sent a host of people and systems into motion. Tsunami sirens were blaring and Emergency Alert System, or EAS, messages were broadcasting over radio and TV stations. But there were parts of the EAS that failed. Local, state and federal officials are now working to sort out those kinks.

Renee Gross, KBBI News

Homer residents evacuated to higher ground early Tuesday morning after the National Weather Service’s Tsunami Warning Center in Palmer issued a tsunami warning for the Gulf of Alaska. The Homer Spit and other low-lying areas were evacuated, but Homer didn’t experience a wave, and no major damage was reported.

City officials say it was a good experience for residents and emergency responders.

University of Alaska Fairbanks' Alaska Earthquake Center

Homer residents may want to make new evacuation plans in case of a tsunami.  A new draft map for the Homer area shows that a tsunami may be able to reach higher ground than scientists previously thought and could cut off the primary evacuation route from the Homer Spit during a worst-case-scenario.