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After 8.0 Earthquake, Tsunami Advisory in Effect for Coastal Areas

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An 8.0 earthquake in American Samoa this morning prompted a tsunami watch in Hawaii and a tsunami advisory for coastal areas of Southern California, including Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties. [Update: Beaches in LA County will close at 8 p.m., more info here]

National Weather Service officials are emphasizing that the local advisory is not a watch or even a warning. "A minor tsunami may be recorded in some areas of the coast which could produce dangerous currents and surges in harbors and bays," the agency said this afternoon in a statement. "Coastal residents are advised to stay out of the waters, off the beach and away from harbors and marinas. Wave height and currents are amplified by irregular shoreline and are difficult to predict."

Minor wave fluctuations around one foot are expected to begin a few minutes past 9 p.m. tonight in San Pedro and Santa Monica harbors.

The above maps are from city of Los Angeles brochures (PDFs are here and here) on the how to survive a tsunami.

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Previously: Tsunami Warning Signs Pop Up Along Coast