High likelihood of tsunami in Turkey's Marmara Sea: Report
A recent report presented to the Turkish Parliament called attention to the lingering threat of tsunamis in the Marmara Sea, putting Turkey's big cities along its coast at risk. The report, drafted by a parliamentary subcommittee investigating earthquake risks, says it could take just 10 minutes for towering tsunami waves to reach the shores in the event of an earthquake.
The report by the Research Committee for Measures Against Earthquakes and Minimizing Earthquake Damage, published by the Milliyet newspaper, details that Turkey is “open to tsunami threat” due to high seismic activity. It notes that the Mediterranean, Aegean and Marmara coasts are particularly susceptible due to the “heavy use (settlement) of the shores.” It adds that Turkey has experienced 136 tsunamis. The most recent tsunamis took place in 2017 in an area between the southwestern town of Bodrum and the Greek island of Kos and in October 2020, affecting Izmir’s Seferihisar district (near the epicenter of the deadly earthquake) and the nearby Greek island of Samos to the north.
The report also lists a number of tsunami precautions. “All relevant agencies, primarily the Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD), should draft emergency evacuation and action plans for coastal settlements after determining dangers and risks and susceptibility to the damage,” the report urges. The report calls for the installation of seismometers on the seabed, the drafting of tsunami danger maps for the Marmara Sea and establishing or increasing the number of early warning systems in the Marmara, Aegean and Mediterranean seas. Lastly, it recommends applying special measures to minimize tsunami damage to structures on the coasts.