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The 1922 Peninsula Malaysia earthquakes; rare intraplate seismicity within the Sundaland Block in Southeast Asia

Stacey Servito Martin, Yu Wang, Muzli Muzli and Shengji Wei
The 1922 Peninsula Malaysia earthquakes; rare intraplate seismicity within the Sundaland Block in Southeast Asia
Seismological Research Letters (May 2020) 91 (5): 2531-2545

Abstract

Seismic hazard in the southern Malay Peninsula located within the Sundaland block in Southeast Asia is poorly understood. The paucity of historical earthquakes and low-magnitude instrumented seismicity has led to the assumption that this region is largely aseismic. We question this point of view by reassessing historical seismicity in this region and, in particular, a pair of moderate earthquakes in the 1920s. The first of these struck on 31 January 1922 at nearly equal 9:10 a.m. local time (LT) for which we estimate an intensity magnitude (MI) nearly equal 5.4, and for the second earthquake on 7 February 1922 at nearly equal 12:15 p.m. LT, we estimate MI nearly equal 5.0. We also identify at least 34 felt earthquakes between 1803 and 1950 that were potentially local within the Sundaland block. These include a very widely felt shock (or set of shocks) on 26 June 1874 that was felt in parts of Borneo, Java, and Sumatra. The discovery of these earthquakes challenges the tectonic stability of the Malay Peninsula and the stable interior of the Sundaland block. The record of historical seismicity in this region relies heavily on European sources, and we recommend locating and consulting indigenous sources to improve the current understanding of regional seismic hazard. We also underscore the need to evaluate the impact of ground motions from rare local earthquakes on the extant building stock and on transportation infrastructure that are otherwise relatively immune to the long-period effects of distant earthquakes commonly felt in the Malay Peninsula.


ISSN: 0895-0695
EISSN: 1938-2057
Serial Title: Seismological Research Letters
Serial Volume: 91
Serial Issue: 5
Title: The 1922 Peninsula Malaysia earthquakes; rare intraplate seismicity within the Sundaland Block in Southeast Asia
Affiliation: Australian National University, Research School of Earth Sciences, Canberra, A.C.T., Australia
Pages: 2531-2545
Published: 20200527
Text Language: English
Publisher: Seismological Society of America, El Cerrito, CA, United States
References: 127
Accession Number: 2020-067186
Categories: Seismology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. 1 table, sketch maps
N02°00'00" - N06°00'00", E100°00'00" - E104°00'00"
Secondary Affiliation: National Taiwan University, TWN, TaiwanIndonesian Meteorological, Climatological & Geophysical Agency, IDN, IndonesiaEarth Observatory of Singapore, SGP, Singapore
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2022, American Geosciences Institute. Abstract, Copyright, Seismological Society of America. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States
Update Code: 202041
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