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J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2015, 3(4), 1544-1567; doi:10.3390/jmse3041544

Geological and Sedimentological Evidence of a Large Tsunami Occurring ~1100 Year BP from a Small Coastal Lake along the Bay of La Paz in Baja California Sur, Mexico

Department of Oceanography and Coastal Sciences, School of the Coast and Environment, Louisiana State University, 1002Y Energy Coast and Environment Building, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Valentin Heller and S. Bradley Moran
Received: 30 July 2015 / Revised: 17 November 2015 / Accepted: 30 November 2015 / Published: 10 December 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tsunami Science and Engineering)
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Abstract

The importance of small-scale seismic events in enclosed water bodies, which can result in large tsunami waves capable of affecting comprehensive damage over small, geographically-confined areas are generally overlooked, although recognizing the occurrence of such events is a necessary element in adequately assessing the risk of natural hazards at specific locations. Here we present evidence for a probable large localized tsunami that occurred within the Bay of La Paz, Baja California Sur, ~1100 year before present (BP), which resulted in the creation of a shelly ridge at an elevation of ~2 m above mean high water (MHW). This ridge consists of a continuous wedge of poorly mixed marine sands and shells ~50 cm in depth deposited along the entire seaward edge of the lake. The marine shells collected from terrestrial environments around the lake include species from a variety of environments, including offshore species with minimum preferred depths of >13 m. The evidence suggests that this material was likely deposited by a tsunami with a runup of 2–3.6 m above MHW, probably associated with the slumping of an island along the tectonically active eastern edge of the bay. View Full-Text
Keywords: tsunami; Baja California; event deposit; coastal hazards tsunami; Baja California; event deposit; coastal hazards
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

McCloskey, T.A.; Bianchette, T.A.; Liu, K.-B. Geological and Sedimentological Evidence of a Large Tsunami Occurring ~1100 Year BP from a Small Coastal Lake along the Bay of La Paz in Baja California Sur, Mexico. J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2015, 3, 1544-1567.

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