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article imageTsunami waves could reach Israel

By Bob Ewing     Oct 28, 2009 in Environment
A recent study conducted by the Leon H. Charney School of Marine Sciences at the University of Haifa says there is a likely chance of tsunami waves reaching the shores of Israel.
Dr. Goodman, an expert geo-archaeologist, made the discovery while assisting in research at the ancient port of Caesarea and at offshore shipwrecks.
Goodman, as quoted by the University press release, said, “There is a likely chance of tsunami waves reaching the shores of Israel. Tsunami events in the Mediterranean do occur less frequently than in the Pacific Ocean, but our findings reveal a moderate rate of recurrence,” she says.
She added. “We expected to find the remains of ships, but were surprised to reveal unusual geological layers the likes of which we had never seen in the region before. We began underwater drilling assuming that these are simply local layers related to the construction of the port. However, we discovered that they are spread along the entire area and realized that we had found something major.”
The geological drilling the team did make it possible for Goodman to date the underwater layers using two methods: carbon-14 dating and OSL (optically stimulated luminescence).
Evidence of four tsunami events at Caesarea in 1500 BC, 100-200 CE, 500-600 CE, and 1100-1200 CE was found as a result of the drilling.
In an article in the Geological Society of America, Goodman explains that the earliest of these tsunamis resulted from the eruption of the Santorini volcano, which affected the entire Mediterranean region.
About the more local tsunami waves, Goodman makes the assumption that they were generated by underwater landslides caused by earthquakes.
“‘Local’ does not necessarily imply ’small’. These could have been waves reaching 5 meters high and as far as 2 km onshore. Coastal communities within this range would have undoubtedly been severely damaged from such a tsunami. While communities onshore clear the ground after such an event and return to civilization, tsunami evidence is preserved under the water,” she explains.
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