Tsunamis, impulse waves, and dam failures are disasters that challenge humanity, often leading to massive casualties and extreme economic losses. The highly unsteady flow conditions generated by such events are often in the form of turbulent bores. The purpose of this study was to investigate and validate a new generation system for bores propagating over dry and wet bed conditions. There are multiple techniques to generate such waves experimentally, and the study focused on the generation of tsunami-like inundation conditions through the vertical release of a water volume. A detailed methodology to characterize the generated waves hydraulically, in terms of their wave heights and flow velocities, is presented, and good agreement with the classical dam-break case for both dry bed surges and wet bed bores was demonstrated. Because of the importance of estimating the impact forces induced by such waves, particular attention was given to the wavefront celerity and the velocity profiles measured behind the wavefront; these were found in agreement with Prandtl’s power law for open channel flows, and in-depth measurements allowed for the definition of an expression to estimate flow deceleration behind the wavefront. Along with considerations of the Froude number and momentum, this paper provides relevant information to assist engineers in designing safer infrastructures in areas prone to such extreme loading.