National Academies Press: OpenBook
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 1984. Japan Sea Central Region Tsunami of May 26, 1983: A Reconnaissance Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18402.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 1984. Japan Sea Central Region Tsunami of May 26, 1983: A Reconnaissance Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18402.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 1984. Japan Sea Central Region Tsunami of May 26, 1983: A Reconnaissance Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18402.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 1984. Japan Sea Central Region Tsunami of May 26, 1983: A Reconnaissance Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18402.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 1984. Japan Sea Central Region Tsunami of May 26, 1983: A Reconnaissance Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18402.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 1984. Japan Sea Central Region Tsunami of May 26, 1983: A Reconnaissance Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18402.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 1984. Japan Sea Central Region Tsunami of May 26, 1983: A Reconnaissance Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18402.
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The Japan Sea Central Region Tsunami of May 26,1983 A Reconnaissance Report Prepared by Li-San Hwang, Tetra Tech, Inc., Pasadena, California Joseph Hammack, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida Committee on Natural Disasters Commission on Engineering and Technical Systems National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C. l984 NAS-NAE .9 I 6 1984 LIBRARY

d-1 NOTICE: The Committee on Natural Disasters project, under which this report was prepared, was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This report has been reviewed by a group other than the authors according to procedures approved by a Report Review Committee consisting of members of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was established by the National Academy of Sciences in l9l6 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy's purposes of furthering knowledge and of advising the federal government. The Council operates in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy under the authority of its congressional charter of l863, which establishes the Academy as a private, nonprofit, self-governing membership corporation. The Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in the conduct of their services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. It is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. The National Academy of Engineering and the Institute of Medicine were established in l964 and l970, respectively, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences. This study was supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. CEE-82l9358 to the National Academy of Sciences. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this report are the authors' and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation, the National Research Council, or the authors' organizations. A limited number of copies of this report are available on request to: Committee on Natural Disasters National Academy of Sciences 2l0l Constitution Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 204l8 Copies of this report can also be obtained from: National Technical Information Service Attention: Document Sales 5285 Port Royal Road Springfield, Virginia 22l6l Report No.: CETS-CND-026 Price Codes: paper A03, mf A0l

COMMITTEE ON NATURAL DISASTERS (l982-83) Chairman ANIL K. CHOPRA, Department of Civil Engineering, University of California, Berkeley Vice Chairman JOHN F. KENNEDY, Institute of Hydraulic Research, University of Iowa Immediate Past Chairman JACK E. CERMAK, Fluid Dynamics and Diffusion Laboratory, Department of Civil Engineering, Colorado State University Members ROBERT G. DEAN, Department of Coastal and Oceanographic Engineering, University of Florida PAUL C. JENNINGS, Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences, California Institute of Technology JAMES O. JIRSA, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Texas at Austin EDWIN KESSLER III, National Severe Storms Laboratory, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Norman, Oklahoma RICHARD D. MARSHALL, Structural Engineering Group, Center for Building Technology, National Bureau of Standards KISHOR C. MEHTA, Institute for Disaster Research, Texas Tech University JAMES K. MITCHELL, Department of Geography, Rutgers University THOMAS SAARINEN, Department of Geography, University of Arizona ROBERT V. WHITMAN, Department of Civil Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology T. LESLIE YOUD, Research Civil Engineer, U.S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, California iii

Staff O. ALLEN ISRAELSEN, Executive Secretary STEVE OLSON, Consultant Editor LALLY ANNE ANDERSON, Secretary JOANN CURRY, Secretary Liaison Representative JOHN GOLDBERG, Program Director, Desiqn Research, Division of Civil and Environmental Engineering, National Science Foundation, Washington, D.C. iv

FOREWORD The Committee on Natural Disasters was formed to study the impact of natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, tornadoes, and hurricanes on engineered structures and systems. The objectives of the committee's work are to improve protection against disasters by providing factual reports of the consequences of these extreme events of nature and to stimulate research needed to understand the hazards posed by natural disasters. The Japan Sea central region earthquake of May 26, l983, provided a unique opportunity for a reconnaissance study of the effects of a moderate tsunami on engineered coastal works in northern Japan and Korea. A two-member team was therefore dispatched by the committee to document the effects of this tsunami for the benefit of researchers and designers of coastal protective works. Anil K. Chopra, Chairman Committee on Natural Disasters

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS The authors wish to acknowledge the generous assistance and hospitality of individuals and agencies in Japan and South Korea who provided information essential for the preparation of this report. Kinjuro Kajiura of the University of Tokyo provided data on the earthquake and wave parameters. Nobuo Shuto of Tohoku University provided a file of data already distilled by himself and various colleagues on the coastal impact of the tsunami. Included in these data were original photographs, photographs from news magazines, and a videotape showing the real-time impingement of the tsunami at various locations along the Japan coast. These photographic and video data are an invaluable resource to U.S. engineers and scientists, and a special debt of gratitude is owed to Professor Shuto, his students, and his staff for their time and expense in making them available. In South Korea we were ably assisted by Lang Choo Lee, Director of the Port Development Division of the Korea Maritime and Port Administration, and Jee-Yong Lee, Director-General of the Meteorological Observations Bureau, Central Meteorological Office. Both of these gentlemen provided their time and an organized collection of data on very short notice. The authors are extremely grateful for this assistance. In addition, we would like to thank Syng Ahn, former Director of the Port Development Division, for the general support he gave us during our stay in South Korea. vi

CONTENTS l INTRODUCTION l 2 THE EARTHQUAKE AND THE TSUNAMI 2 3 TSUNAMI PROPAGATION AND COASTAL TRANSFORMATION 6 4 COASTAL DAMAGE 20 Damage from Flooding 20 Floating Structures and Debris Damage 2l Damage to Protective Structures 22 5 SUMMARY AND RECOMMENDATIONS 26 Tsunami Theories 26 Coastal Protection 27 Warning and Public Education 27 REFERENCES 29 NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL REPORTS OF POSTDISASTER STUDIES, l964-l983 3l vii

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Japan Sea Central Region Tsunami of May 26, 1983: A Reconnaissance Report Get This Book
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A few seconds after noon on May 26, 1983, a major earthquake occurred in the Japan Sea about 100 km off the coast of Akita Prefecture, which is located in the northeast Honshu, Japan. The earthquake had a magnitude of 7.7 on the Richter scale, as measured by the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA). Four individuals lost their lives directly from the earthquake, and considerable property damage occurred, primarily from foundation failure as a result of soil liquefaction.

The earthquake generated a tsunami that began striking the Japan coast approximately 12 minutes after the earthquake occurred. One hundred lives were lost as a consequence of the tsunami alone. The tsunami also caused significant flooding and property damage to coastal regions.The tsunami affected the entire Japan Sea, hitting the surrounding coastline of the Korean Peninsula and the USSR. Three lives were lost in South Korea, when the wave arrived there approximately 1-1/2 hours after the earthquake. At the time of this writing, no information is available on the impact of the tsunami in North Korea or the USSR.

The Japan Sea Central Region Tsunami focuses on the tsunami generated by the Japan Sea central region earthquake, as officially named by the JMA. The data presented herein were collected by the authors during site visits to Japan and South Korea approximately six weeks after the earthquake. Even though the recently acquired data are more reliable than those reported immediately after the earthquake, they must still be considered preliminary and subject to change as continuing studies in Japan are completed.

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