Thank you all for the ideas so far.
It can be anywhere in the world. She has been searching diligently for a while. The teacher explained this would be a difficult assignment.
She has now clarified something for me: she can use the tsunami if she can be specific. For example, one particular family that was affected or something along those lines. She is looking at using the upgrade to the early warning system for tsunami as a result of that particular incident.
We will continue to search...unfortunately, there is no library open on Sunday. She can turn it in late, but for a decreased grade. She had misunderstood the assignment in the beginning, thinking she just needed an example of a recent natural disaster, and used the earthquake in Japan last week. She is being given the opportunity to re-do it, as the teacher knows she was not as clear as she should have been on the assignment.
It is the adaptation that is important, and the time frame. It has to be in the last 12 months, that the disaster happened.
Thanks again to everyone. I wanted to post here because I knew that there were people from around the world who may be able to point us in the direction of something that didn't make the news headlines in the US.