The American Samoa Government has declared a “State of Disaster Emergency” for the territory via Executive Order in relation to the Earthquakes Felt in Ta’u, Manu’a.
This was confirmed in Executive Order 008-22 issued on Wednesday by Governor Lemanu Peleti Sialega Mauga.
“The facts and evidence that have been gathered so far have supported a compelling reason to prioritize the protection of life and property. By signing this Executive Order, I want to ensure that all local resources are made available to respond efficiently and effectively in case these eruptions worsen.
“I want to recognize and commend the first responders that are on the ground and have been standing by in Manu’a. Many of them have been mobilized to assist with displaced villagers and guarantee the safety of all evacuees,” said Lemanu in his Executive Order.
Governor Lemanu and a team of Directors upon arrival in Manu’a were briefed by the Department of Homeland Security that the scientists and NOAA researchers had completed their assessments at this time.
“Their findings lean towards the conclusion that the recent seismographic activities are not primarily caused by the Vailulu’u seamount, American Samoa’s most active submarine volcano.
“However, they do not rule out that the cause for these tremors is due to perhaps other volcanic activity in the vicinity of the Manu’a islands.
“We will respond quickly to the immediate actions needed to ensure a swift and safe evacuation from coastal villages, villages with only one main road, and villages that need a good water source at evacuation sites,” said the Governor.
The emergency declaration is in effect as of August 10, 2022 but was issued yesterday when the Emergency Operations Center was activated due to multiple daily reports from residents of Ta’u, Ofu and Olosega, reporting a series of frequent tremors and crackling/booming sounds.