31 Dec 2004

PNG villagers flee to higher grounds after hearing tsunami

8:01 am on 31 December 2004

Many coastal villagers in Papua New Guinea have moved to higher ground after seeing the devastation from the earthquake and tsunami that flattened coastal South East Asian countries last Sunday.

Villagers in the northeastern coast of Morobe and West New Britain, and the Tewae-Siassi and Kandrian Gloucester districts have moved inland, fearing a similar catastrophe might strike them.

Their fears were exasperated by recent media reports about American scientists discovering a new fault on the seabed between Siassi Island and Cape Gloucester.

The report says a new fault has emerged which has also forced a growing volcano under the sea between Ritter Island and Cape Gloucester.

A villager in Kelenoa, Bob Irope, says with the discovery of faults and volcanoes, a tsunami could happen to them, and wipe the entire population along the coast of Sialum.

The newspaper, The National, reports villagers in Vanimo have also expressed similar fears.