Location: Republic of Korea. Tsunamis may affect areas of the Korean east coast following the January 1, 2024, earthquake in Japan.
The Embassy is closely monitoring the projected path of the tsunamis, which according to the Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA), initially reached Gangwon Province on the eastern coast on Monday evening, January 1, in the wake of a 7.6 magnitude earthquake that struck Ishikawa Prefecture, central Japan around 4pm Korea Standard Time (KST).
The highest tsunami in the Gangwon coastal area was 66 centimeters (26 inches) at 8:42pm KST, Monday evening. Gangwon Province issued tsunami warnings, instructing residents to take precautions and evacuate to higher ground.
As of 8am KST, January 2, KMA authorities reported additional tsunamis reaching affected coastal areas in Gangwon Province (Namhangjin, Mookho, Sokcho, Imwon and Hoopo) and are slowly reducing to heights below 10 centimeters (4 inches).
Those travelling to or residing in Gangwon Province were advised on January 1 to avoid the coast and evacuate to higher ground (areas higher than a three-story building). Additional tsunami warnings could include similar instructions. As the situation could change suddenly, particularly with potential for aftershocks, we encourage all U.S. citizens to exercise continued caution and follow all guidance from local authorities.
ACTIONS TO TAKE:
U.S. citizens in Korea are encouraged to monitor local news media and follow the guidance of government officials and local authorities. Updates from the Korean Meteorological Administration and the U.S. National Tsunami Warning Center can be found online. Stay away from coastal areas when the potential for a tsunami exists. For information about earthquakes, please refer to the U.S. Geological Survey’s Earthquake Hazards Program.
Lastly, please ensure your information is up to date with STEP and advise any U.S. Citizens that DID NOT receive this message to do the same.
At this time, consular operations (including visa interviews, passport interviews, and Consular Report of Birth Abroad application acceptance) will continue uninterrupted. U.S. citizens requiring emergency consular assistance can call 02-397-4114.
U.S. Embassy Seoul
State Department – Consular Affairs
Telephone: +1 (888) 407-4747
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