Skip to Main Content
Book Chapter

Seismicity, seismotectonics, and seismic hazard in the northern Rhine area

By
Klaus-G. Hinzen
Klaus-G. Hinzen
Earthquake Observatory Bensberg, Department of Earthquake Geology, University of Cologne, Vinzenz-Pallotti-Strasse 26, D-51429 Bergisch Gladbach, Germany
Search for other works by this author on:
Sharon K. Reamer
Sharon K. Reamer
Earthquake Observatory Bensberg, Department of Earthquake Geology, University of Cologne, Vinzenz-Pallotti-Strasse 26, D-51429 Bergisch Gladbach, Germany
Search for other works by this author on:
Published:
January 01, 2007

The northern Rhine area covers an area of more than 40,000 km2 and is one of the most important areas of earthquake recurrence in Europe north of the Alps. The Lower Rhine Embayment, a part of the northern Rhine area that extends over parts of western Germany, eastern Belgium, and the southern Netherlands, displays basin-like subsidence and, along with the Roer valley graben, has been the source of most of the historical and recent earthquake activity, particularly along the western border faults. Other important earthquake-prone areas include the Stavelot-Venn Massif and the Neuwied Basin, the latter of which is an area of periodically intensive micro-seismicity. Seismic instrumentation in the area has accumulated steadily since the early 1950s and presently consists of ∼50 stations. Although the strongest instrumentally recorded earthquake in the region occurred in 1992 near Roermond, with a local magnitude of 6.0, studies of historical earthquakes, such as Vervier (1692) and Düren (1756), estimate macroseismic magnitudes of 6.8 and 6.4, respectively. Paleoseismic studies indicate that even stronger, surface-rupturing earthquakes have occurred during the Holocene. The recent ML 4.9 earthquake in Alsdorf in 2002 caused some structural damage and was preceded by several small earthquakes and was followed by several aftershocks. Seismic hazard evaluation is hampered by the sparse earthquake record. A hybridized instrumental and historical earthquake catalog compiled from events over the past 300 yr combined with seismotectonic aspects indicates a maximum magnitude of 7.0. A site-intensity map based on macroseismic intensities from the hybridized catalog identifies concentrations of recent activities in the western part of the Lower Rhine Embayment, east of the city of Aachen.

You do not currently have access to this article.

Figures & Tables

Contents

GSA Special Papers

Continental Intraplate Earthquakes: Science, Hazard, and Policy Issues

Seth Stein
Seth Stein
Search for other works by this author on:
Stéphane Mazzotti
Stéphane Mazzotti
Search for other works by this author on:
Geological Society of America
Volume
425
ISBN print:
9780813724256
Publication date:
January 01, 2007

References

Related

Citing Books via

Related Book Content
Close Modal
This Feature Is Available To Subscribers Only

Sign In or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal