VIDEO: Samoa Tsunami Flattens Villages

The video player is loading. If it does not appear shortly, you may need to enable JavaScript in your Web browser and/or get the latest Flash Player plug-in to view it.
Email to a Friend

September 30, 2009—Tsunami waves, sparked by a powerful underwater earthquake, swept away people and cars and flattened villages in Samoa (Samoa location on map), American Samoa, and Tonga in the South Pacific on Tuesday—as seen in amateur video. (See new Samoan-islands tsunami pictures.)

© 2009 National Geographic (AP)

More Tsunami Pictures, Facts, and Other Coverage
Tsunami Survival Tips
Tsunami Pictures: 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami
Tsunami Pictures: Tsunami Aerial Views
Video: Sri Lanka Tsunami
Video: Tsunami Seen From Balcony
Tsunami to Hit Caribbean When Million-Ton Rock Falls?
Did Animals Sense Tsunami Was Coming?
Pictures: Tsunami Aftermath in Indonesia, January 2005
Ancient Mediterranean Tsunami May Strike Again
Pictures: Tsunami in the Solomons—Before and After

Unedited Transcript

A house moved off its foundation

Amateur Video posted on YouTube shows devastation in the wake of massive tsunami waves that washed across the shores of Samoa and American Samoa.

Villages were flattened and cars and people swept out to sea by the force of the waves. Associated Press reports at least 82 dead and dozens missing. At least 19 of the deaths were on American Samoa, where this video was taken.

The earthquake could be felt in American Samoa, home to about 65,000 people. The quake, with a magnitude between 8.0 and 8.3 shook the ground in the morning, local time, and was about 125 miles south of Apia, Samoa. Samoa has over 200,000 residents.

This video was taken as the waters were still receding in Pago Pago, American Samoa.

A U.S. National Parks superintendent reported at least four tsunami waves over 15 feet high coming ashore on American Samoa, reaching up to a mile inland.

The Samoan Prime Minister was in New Zealand when the tsunami hit. SOUNDBITE (English): Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi, Samoan Prime Minister "It's most distressing to me personally. I am trying to come to terms with the events and of course how we are going to respond."

Tsunami warnings were posted as far away to the north as Japan, Hawaii, and the U.S. and Canada west coast. To the south, the island of Tonga suffered serious damage as seen in aerial photos. Reportedly waves as high as 12 feet swept onto the island nation with at least 10 deaths reported.

NEWS FEEDS    After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed. After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed.

Get our news delivered directly to your desktop—free.
How to Use XML or RSS




ADVERTISEMENT


LATEST NEWS VIDEOS

50 Drives of a Lifetime

Listen to your favorite National Geographic news daily, anytime, anywhere from your mobile phone. No wires or syncing. Download Stitcher free today.