Tsunami Waves Hit US Mainland

But no major damage reported
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 11, 2011 4:24 AM CST
Updated Mar 11, 2011 11:15 AM CST
Tsunami Warning Extended to Entire US West Coast
Jessica Teng, left, and John Parisik find shelter in a shopping center after being forced to evacuate early Friday, March 11, 2011 in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.   (AP Photo/Chris Stewart)

The first tsunami waves triggered by Japan's massive 8.9-magnitude earthquake have hit the US mainland, the AP reports. Waves surged slightly along the northern coast of California and could reach seven feet; Oregon also saw high water. The tsunami was earlier moving through all the Hawaiian islands, according to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center. Maui saw seven-foot waves; Oahu and Kauai only saw three-feet waves, but officials said waves will continue and could get larger.

No major damage has been reported in the US. Because Hawaiians had hours to prepare, roads and beaches were empty, coastal residents had evacuated, and tourists had moved to higher floors of their high-rise hotels before the waves hit. In Southern California, surfers were even taking advantage of the larger waves. Click for more on the quake's aftermath. (More 9.0 earthquake stories.)

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