California’s governor declared a state of emergency after tsunami waves hit the US West Coast, forcing evacuations, damaging boats and leaving one man missing, swept out to sea.
Governor Jerry Brown’s declaration for four coastal counties unblocks federal funds to help clean up after waves triggered by Japan’s devastating quake hit the US mainland, notably in northern California and Oregon.
“The effects of the water surge continue to threaten the counties of Del Norte, Humboldt, San Mateo, and Santa Cruz,” he said in a proclamation issued by his office.
One of the worst hit towns was Crescent City, 560 kilometers (350 miles) north of San Francisco, where at least 35 boats were crushed and thrown on top of each other in a harbor. Some 7,000 people were evacuated before the tsunami struck.
A tsunami in 2006 caused $25 million in damage to the town in Del Norte county, one of five in California where evacuation orders were issued, along with Humboldt, San Mateo, San Luis and Mendocino counties.