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UPDATE: All B.C. Tsunami advisories cleared

Advisories remain in place for Vancouver Island’s western and southern coasts
A tsunami advisory was issued Jan. 15 around 5 a.m. for coastal B.C. (U.S. Tsunami Warning System image)

All tsunami advisories have been canceled by Emergency Management B.C. more than eight hours after they were first announced.

Coastal B.C. was under the advisory since the early hours of Saturday morning following a volcanic eruption on Friday near the Tonga Islands.

Mike Farnworth, B.C. minister of public safety and solicitor general, said Saturday morning it was expected that the advisories would remain in place for several hours.

“To be clear, this is an advisory only, and not a tsunami warning. The risk is limited to increased tidal currents. Until the advisory is lifted, stay away from beaches, shorelines and marinas, and follow the directions of local governments,” said Farnworth in a statement.

Although it was not a more serious tsunami warning, the event demonstrated that coast warning systems do work, Farnworth added.

The province first issued the alert around 5 a.m. Jan. 15, for the coast and all of Vancouver Island.

No significant inundation was expected, but low lying coastal areas and beaches were at risk, according to EMBC, in an alert issued by Environment Canada.

READ ALSO: Tsunami risk from Sooke to Sidney

READ MORE: Be prepared emergency series

People in coastal areas were advised to stay away from the shoreline and heed instructions from local authorities.

Local fire departments took to Twitter to alert residents that officials are following the data.

There is no need for evacuations from waterfront homes in View Royal but please stay off docks and away from beaches until an all-clear is issued, View Royal Fire Rescue wrote.

The Saanich Peninsula Alert system sent a warning to residents around 7:30 a.m. noting the advisory and reiterating there is no need to evacuate. With the possibility of strong tidal currents and residents are asked to avoid beaches and marinas until further notice.

The organization called on local governments in these areas to activate their emergency plans and to consider evacuating marinas, beaches and other areas at risk.

The U.S. Tsunami warning system showed a magnitude 1 earthquake associated with the eruption near the Tonga Islands.

Advisories were also issued for Hawaii and Alaska.

READ MORE: Know what to do in the event of a Greater Victoria tsunami warning

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About the Author: Greater Victoria News Staff

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