The problem only occurred with the HTML version of the message, the text only version was unaffected. The problem appears to have affected the HTML versions of all the tsunami warnings, including those a month old. The RSS feed version of the service was unaffected.
Fatal error: Maximum execution time of 25 seconds exceeded in /ptwc/www/html/include/inc_lastRSS.php on line 92
From: TSUNAMI BULLETIN NUMBER 002 (html version), PACIFIC TSUNAMI WARNING CENTER/NOAA/NWS, ISSUED AT 0211Z 04 JAN 2009
NOAA need to modify the design of their system to better cope with the likely load. This can't be done by simply installing more web server capacity. The design of the Internet service needs to take the requirements for sudden high demand into account.
The West Coast & Alaska Tsunami Warning Center provided a map of the location of the earthquake. However, it then referred the reader to the Pacific centre for more details.
The Joint Australian Tsunami Warning Centre issued a "National No Threat Bulletin" 2026Z Sat 03 Jan 2009.
ICT professionals may feel it is not their place to tell emergency experts and government officials how to do their business, but in this case it is. Failure to build an effective warning system is unethical, and in addition may be a crime.