All New South Wales beaches closed for tsunami threat

11:18, February 28, 2010      

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All New South Wales (NSW) beaches have been closed and people hoping to view tsunami conditions have been ushered off the sand.

Surf Life Saving NSW has ordered all beaches closed from Sunday morning after an 8.8 magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of central Chile on Saturday.

Tsunami shockwaves have already struck islands in French Polynesia, bringing waves up to four meters high and minor damage but no injuries.

The Joint Australian Tsunami Warning Center has issued tsunami warnings for four Australian states on the eastern coast from Sunday morning.

Dangerous waves, strong ocean currents and foreshore flooding may hit coastal areas stretching south from Rockhampton, in Queensland, to Victoria and Tasmania.

Beachgoers attended NSW beaches on Sunday morning until they were ushered out of the water and off the beach by surf life savers.

"We've issued to all of our NSW clubs a directive to close the beaches until further notice," a Surf Live Saving NSW spokeswoman told Australian Associated Press Sunday.

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