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In response to the 26 December 2004 tsunami, a survey team of scientists was dispatched to Sri Lanka. Measurements made by the team show that the tsunami elevation and runup ranged from 5 to 12 meters. Eyewitnesses report that up to three separate waves attacked the coast, with the second or third generally the largest. Our conclusion stresses the importance of education: Residents with a basic knowledge of tsunamis, as well as an understanding of how environmental modifications will affect overland flow, are paramount to saving lives and minimizing tsunami destruction.