• In Japanese, tsunami means "harbor wave." Tsunamis are ocean waves triggered by an earthquake, volcano, or other movement of the ocean floor. Potentially imperceptible in deep water, a tsunami increases in height as it encounters the shallow waters of shore, often leading to extensive wreckage and loss.

  • Term Part of Speech Definition Encyclopedic Entry
    coastal flooding Noun

    process where a storm or tsunami causes the sea to rush inland, as a storm surge. Also called estuarine flooding.

    earthquake Noun

    the sudden shaking of Earth's crust caused by the release of energy along fault lines or from volcanic activity.

    seismic sea wave Noun

    ocean wave triggered by an earthquake, volcano, or other movement of the ocean floor. Also called a tsunami.

    tectonic activity Noun

    movement of tectonic plates resulting in geologic activity such as volcanic eruptions and earthquakes.

    tsunami Noun

    ocean waves triggered by an earthquake, volcano, or other movement of the ocean floor.