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NOAA NCTR research product
Not an official forecast

Last updated: 2016-11-16

The New Zealand tsunami was generated by a Mw 7.8 earthquake (42.757°S 173.077°E), at 2016-11-13 11:02:56 UTC, 53 km (32.9 mi) NE of Amberley, New Zealand (according to the USGS). The tsunami was first detected at the Kaikoura tide gauge, New Zealand, where leading depression wave started to record immediately after the earthquake, with maximum withdrawal of 2 meters arriving about 25 minutes after the earthquake; maximum positive wave arrived about 40 minutes after the earthquake. Model results shown below were created with the NOAA forecast method using MOST model with the tsunami source inferred from epicenter location and magnitude (Mw 7.8) of the earthquake.

The graphics display preliminary modeling analysis, showing qualitative and quantitative information about the tsunami, including tsunami wave interaction with ocean floor bathymetric features, and neighboring coastlines. Tsunami model amplitude information is shown color-coded according to the scale bar.

Modeling Results

Model and tide gauge sea level data comparisons

Comparison of the November 13, 2016 Amberly, New Zealand tsunami recorded at near-field tide gauges with model results. The model time series are obtained from hindcast model simulation, with source deformation computed using the USGS Moment Tensor parameters and fault location inferred from local tide-gauge records.

The discrepancies between model results and tide gauge observation are due to our limited knowledge of the earthquake source configuration at this point, as well as lack of accurate bathymetry in the vicinity of the tide gauge locations. The model results are preliminary and are expected to be updated in the near future.

Disclaimer: The models on these pages show the results of ongoing research to enhance tsunami science and to improve NOAA operational tsunami forecasts. These products were developed during or shortly after the tsunami event, are intended for research use, and are not an official forecast. They should not be used as the basis of any public or private policy decisions. Please contact NCTR to find if there are more detailed follow-on analysis results.

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When using information from this page, please credit NOAA / PMEL / Center for Tsunami Research