East Texas men describe experiences with tsunami

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - By Holley Nees - email

LUFKIN, Texas (KTRE) - Seemingly a world away the Japan earthquake sparked tsunamis close to home.

"Here, we just pretty much had an abnormal high tide, rise quickly back to low tide, back to high tide, which normally takes a day to do, we did it within like five minutes," Chase Pavlic said.

Hudson native Pavlic is in the Air Force and stationed on the Hawaiian island of Oahu with his family.

"When you're in the middle of the night you start hearing the tsunami alarms going off," Pavlic said. "You're kind of nervous, kind of freaking out a little bit."

He says people were lined up for two miles to get fuel at local gas stations.

In San Francisco, a Lufkin man says he didn't know what to expect.

"I was glued to the TV and everything I saw was that they had like four or five schools in San Mateo County that were closed and they set up some evacuation points," J.P. Heath said. "But I'm not emergency management expert, but it seemed like that was just more of a precaution."

A radio announcer for Rice baseball, Heath is there for the Cal Baseball Classic.

"It's just strange being somewhere else and something like this is happening because I don't know the area," Heath said.

The tsunami hit Hawaii and the entire U.S. west coast was put on alert. Heath says where he was in San Francisco this morning, they were just seeing one- to three-foot waves.

Back in Hawaii, Pavlic stays prepared for the ripple effects of what is estimated to be the fifth largest quake on earth.

"I guess it's one of the things you expect when you live on a little island," Pavlic said. "It's kind of like living in Florida during hurricane season, you know it's going to hit, you just hope it's not going to hit you bad."

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