Tongans flee for their lives as tsunami destroys island nation after underwater volcano erupts

Tongans flee for their lives as powerful tsunami destroys island nation after underwater volcano in South Pacific erupts, sending smoke 20km into the sky

  • Tonga hit by tsunami waves after submarine volcano erupted
  • Dramatic video showed huge waves pounding houses and buildings
  • Tongan Meteorological Service warned locals to seek high ground



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A tsunami has hit Tonga, causing terrified local residents to flee to higher elevations as huge waves crashed over cars, roads and houses.

It is clear that an underground volcanic eruption led to the tsunami, which destroyed coastal homes, buildings, roads and infrastructure in the Pacific on Saturday.

Dramatic images showed huge waves crashing on the populated islands of the archipelago hours after the eruption.

The Tongan Meteorological Service issued the tsunami warning on Saturday night as sirens blared in the capital Nuku’alofa.

A tsunami has hit Tonga, causing terrified local residents to flee to higher ground as huge waves crashed over roads and into homes

A tsunami has hit Tonga, causing terrified local residents to flee to higher ground as huge waves crashed over roads and into homes

Locals took to social media to share dramatic videos of the rising waves making land and crashing through houses and cars

Locals took to social media to share dramatic videos of the rising waves making land and crashing through houses and cars

The locals had few warnings when the huge waves came ashore

The locals had few warnings when the huge waves came ashore

Locals took to social media to share dramatic videos of the rising waves making land and crashing through houses and cars

Dramatic official sky maps showed eruption cloud over Tonga after Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha'apai volcano erupted

Dramatic official sky maps showed eruption cloud over Tonga after Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha'apai volcano erupted

Dramatic official sky maps showed eruption cloud over Tonga after Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha’apai volcano erupted

Reports said emergency warnings instructed locals to move to higher areas urgently.

The Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha’apai volcano erupted Friday, sending debris, ash and gas 20 kilometers into the air.

The eruption on Friday plunged the country’s main islands into darkness.

It is located about 30 kilometers southeast of the island of Fonuafo’ou in Tonga.

More to come

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