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The 2004 Parkfield earthquake, the 1985 prediction, and characteristic earthquakes; lessons for the future

D. D. Jackson and Y. Y. Kagan
The 2004 Parkfield earthquake, the 1985 prediction, and characteristic earthquakes; lessons for the future (in Special issue on the 2004 Parkfield earthquake and the Parkfield Earthquake Prediction Experiment, Ruth A. Harris (prefacer) and J. Ramon Arrowsmith (prefacer))
Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America (September 2006) 96 (4B): S397-S409

Abstract

The 1985 prediction of a characteristic magnitude 6 Parkfield earthquake was unsuccessful, since no significant event occurred in the 95% time window (1985-1993) anywhere near Parkfield. The magnitude 6 earthquake near Parkfield in 2004 failed to satisfy the prediction not just because it was late; it also differed in character from the 1985 prediction and was expectable according to a simple null hypothesis. Furthermore, the prediction was too vague in several important respects to meet the accepted definition of an earthquake prediction. An event occurring by chance and meeting the general description of the predicted one was reasonably probable. The original characteristic earthquake model has failed in comprehensive tests, yet it is still widely used. Modified versions employed in recent official seismic hazard calculations allow for interactions between segments and uncertainties in the parameters. With more adjustable parameters, the modified versions are harder to falsify. The characteristic model as applied at Parkfield and elsewhere rests largely on selected data that may be biased because they were taken out of context. We discuss implications of the 2004 event for earthquake prediction, the characteristic earthquake hypothesis, and earthquake occurrence in general.


ISSN: 0037-1106
EISSN: 1943-3573
Coden: BSSAAP
Serial Title: Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America
Serial Volume: 96
Serial Issue: 4B
Title: The 2004 Parkfield earthquake, the 1985 prediction, and characteristic earthquakes; lessons for the future
Title: Special issue on the 2004 Parkfield earthquake and the Parkfield Earthquake Prediction Experiment
Author(s): Jackson, D. D.Kagan, Y. Y.
Author(s): Harris, Ruth A.prefacer
Author(s): Arrowsmith, J. Ramonprefacer
Affiliation: University of California, Department of Earth and Space Sciences, Los Angeles, CA, United States
Affiliation: U. S. Geological Survey, Menlo Park, CA, United States
Pages: S397-S409
Published: 200609
Text Language: English
Publisher: Seismological Society of America, Berkeley, CA, United States
References: 60
Accession Number: 2006-075806
Categories: SeismologyEnvironmental geology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus.
N35°40'00" - N36°00'00", W120°34'60" - W120°10'00"
Secondary Affiliation: Arizona State University, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute. Abstract, Copyright, Seismological Society of America. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States
Update Code: 200643
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