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Terrifying footage recorded the huge boom caused by the underwater volcano that erupted in Tonga. You can see the video here:
The clip, recorded by Siosaia Lanilangi, showed several people standing near the waterfront looking at the clouds of smoke caused by volcano when a blast can be heard, followed seconds later by an even louder bang that causes everyone to run.
The underwater volcano went off on 15 January near the island of Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai.
The eruption - described as a once-in-a-millennium event - triggered a sonic boom that was reportedly heard as far away as Alaska, according to The Guardian.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald the explosion was the equivalent of 1,000 Hiroshima bombs.
Incredible satellite footage captured the moment the volcano erupted sending out a shock wave across the ocean.
Tonga's Hunga Tonga volcano just had one of the most violent volcano eruptions ever captured on satellite. pic.twitter.com/M2D2j52gNn— US StormWatch (@US_Stormwatch) January 15, 2022
As a result, a tsunami warning was issued for Japan, Hawaii, the east coast of Australia, and even the west coast of the US.
The underwater volcano lies around 65 kilometres north of the capital Nuku'alofa, and a 1.2 metre tsunami was recorded near the capital shortly after the eruption.
One eyewitness told Stuff: "It was massive, the ground shook, our house was shaking. It came in waves. My younger brother thought bombs were exploding nearby.
"We just knew straight away it was a tsunami. Just water gushing into our home.
"You could just hear screams everywhere, people screaming for safety, for everyone to get to higher ground."
Residents were told to wear face masks to avoid breathing in volcanic ash, and to only drink bottled water.
There are also concerns that the amount of sulphur dioxide gas released by the eruption could cause acid rain in Tonga and Fiji, affecting crops and drinking water, Professor Shane Cronin of the University of Auckland told New Scientist.
Yesterday, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern sent over a plane to assess the damage caused by the eruption.
The PM said there had been no reports of any deaths in Tonga relating to the eruption so far, but warned that there was ‘significant damage’ caused to the island.
Two people have drowned in northern Peru after unusually high waves were reported in the area following the eruption.
Katie Greenwood of the IFRC in Fiji told the BBC: "We suspect there could be up to 80,000 people throughout Tonga affected by either the eruption itself or from the tsunami wave and inundation as a result of the eruption.
"That was a shock to people, so we do hold some concern for those outer islands and we're very keen to hear from people."
Featured Image Credit: Facebook/Siosaia Lanilangi
Topics: World News
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