Strong-motion records of the 1968 Tokachi-Oki earthquake were examined, and two very high stress drop subevents were identified. The first subevent had been previously located by Nagamune (1969), and the second subevent was located in this study using P waves recorded on short-period WWSSN records. Estimates of source parameters revealed small source dimensions (<1 per cent of the aftershock area) and very high dynamic and static stress drops in the kilobar range for both of the subevents. It is suggested that these subevents are important in driving the main rupture of this earthquake.
The two subevents also produced the dominant accelerations on the strong-motion records, and it is shown that high-peak accelerations (150 to 200 cm/sec2) were recorded even at relatively large distances (100 to 200 km).