PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Waves triggered by the earthquake in Japan have made their way to Hawaii.
The water swamped some beaches, but have stopped short of the hotels. Still, tsunami warnings are in effect up and down the West Coast.
KDKA Assistant News Director Brenda Pavillian is in Hawaii, in the middle of a two week vacation, but that trip has been unexpectedly interrupted by the unfolding drama.
“We’ve been watching it,” said Pavillian. “We came in and heard there had been a second one and thought nothing of it. Went down, and then heard they had issued a tsunami watch.”
That was 9 p.m. Thursday night. Within an hour, it was a warning, and local news stations started non-stop overnight coverage with updates from the Pacific Tsunami Center every 30 minutes.
“The local anchors here said they made it sound a lot worse on Fox and CNN, than they are on the local news,” Pavillian said. “They’ve got live pictures up of the shore at Diamondhead, at Waikiki and Pearl Harbor.”
After filling every container they could find with fresh drinking water, Pavillian, her mom and sister camped out overnight and followed the coverage on television.
“We watched live the first wave come in and it really didn’t look like much,” she said. “I know the second and third ones can be worse, but so far it hasn’t been too bad.”
Yet, she can tell that the Hawaiian natives are taking it very seriously.
“The officials here are advising everybody to stay in and you can’t travel yet … we can’t leave the floor that we’re on yet,” Pavillian said.
The hotel she is staying in is on the beach at Waikiki in Honolulu where she noticed how activity has stopped.
“I’m sitting on our balcony now, and I do see one or two people walking around, but usually we are staying right off main drag and usually it’s busy all night long. There’s nobody out.”