Expert Analysis Suggests Tsunamis in Noto Peninsula and Niigata Prefecture Post-Earthquake Reached Up to 3 Meters

The Yomiuri Shimbun

The Noto Peninsula Earthquake may have caused tsunamis reaching over 2 to 3 meters in height across various parts of Noto Peninsula and Niigata Prefecture, according to an expert analysis. The Japan Meteorological Agency faced multiple issues in their observations, only able to report tsunami heights as “several tens of centimeters to over 1.2 meters.” It is now believed that much higher tsunamis hit the areas.

A research team from the Building Research Institute and the University of Tokyo used data on faults provided by the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan to calculate the height of tsunamis in various locations using computers. They found that the maximum tsunami height was estimated at 3.6 meters in Suzu, where damage was severe and about 3 meters in the town of Noto. Calculations also suggested tsunami heights of about 2 meters for Hegura Island in Wajima, 2.5 meters in Shika, and 2 meters in Joetsu, Niigata Prefecture.

JMA observations were compromised when the tide gauge in Suzu became inoperable immediately after the earthquake.

In Wajima, the observation point recorded a rise in sea level up to 1.2 meters before data transmission ceased. A height of 50 centimeters was seen in Nanao, the only in Noto Peninsula, while in Niigata Prefecture, 40 centimeters was recorded in Kashiwazaki. Yushiro Fujii, a senior researcher at the Building Research Institute, said: “Although these are results from calculations, the impression is that the tsunamis were larger than initially thought. There is a possibility that the tsunami amplified and spread off the east coast of the peninsula.”