An assumption is made that the attenuation of earthquake intensity parallels, or is representative of, the dissipation of earthquake energy and thus varies smoothly with distance outward from the center. A model embodying this concept is developed based on 400,000 earthquake intensity elements collected by the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey and its successor agencies during the period from 1928 to 1974. Curves for each intensity element of the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale of 1931 are then derived and fitted to the model. A revised intensity scale is assembled by reassigning the intensity elements in accordance with the results of the fitting process.

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