At exactly 5:36 P.M. on Good Friday, 1964 an earthquake measuring 8.6 on the richter scale struck a 500m belt along the southern coast of Alaska. The earth shook and split for a horrifing five minutes. Buildings swayed and collapsed and greak creaks formed in the earth. But the devestation did not end in Alaska.
The scource of the quake was under the waters of Prince William Sound, about 160 km southeast of Anchorage. Giant tsunamis radiated out from there, adding considerably to the earthquake destruction.
Valdezis about 48 km from the scource of the earthquake. Almost immediatly the tsunami wave rushed up the narrow neck of the harbour, and a wall of water struck the coast. The water swept twenty workers of the dock who were unloading the ships in the harbour. A father and his two children also dissapeared into the sea that day. The tsunami rushed into Valdez flinging houses, cars and people about as if they were toys. The flood waters swept, just as quickly as they had come, back out to sea, leaving destruction of property and the bodies of thirty - two people.
Tsunamis also struck the coast of Steward, Kodiak, Depoe Bay, Crescent City, Eureka, Santa Catalina Island and even Hawaii, nearly 4800 km away. All grim reminders of the distant earthquake.