For the most part, the only hope
during a tsunami for ships is deep
water. On May 20, 1883, the
captain of the German warship
Elizabeth reported seeing an 11
km high cloud of ash and dust
rising above the uninhabited
island of Krakatau.When
Krakatau exploded on August
26-27, 1883 the steamship Berouw
was carried up the Koeripan
River valley over a mile inland,
thirty feet above sea level, killing
all 28 of its crew. The steamship
Governor-General Loudon
survived only because Captain
Johan Lindemann powered right
up the tsunami.    
A concern for the admiral is not just whether a port is functioning or can be
repaired, but what cargoes the port is capable of handling.