Scientists found that if a magnitude 7.5 earthquake were to occur on the Seattle Fault, tsunami waves over 40 feet tall could reach the Seattle area in fewer than 3 minutes.
“Tsunami inundation and strong currents may continue for more than 3 hours from the start of the earthquake,” according to the news release.
The study shows shoreline flooding and changes to shorelines would occur throughout the Seattle area following such a powerful earthquake.
The last known earthquake on the Seattle Fault happened about 1,100 years ago, the release says.
The study was “conducted to help local and state emergency managers and planners develop and refine response and preparedness plans for a tsunami in the middle of Washington’s largest population center and economic hub,” the release says.