Abstract

We relocated the large 1937, 1942, and 1954 earthquakes in the San Jacinto fault zone. The epicenters of the main shocks, aftershocks, and some preshocks were determined using empirical station corrections from recent small events in the study areas. The 1937 (ML 5.9) earthquake has an epicenter between the surface traces of the San Jacinto and Buck Ridge faults, and aftershocks suggest about 7 km of rupture predominantly to the northwest. A significant increase in small earthquake activity occurred about 112 yr before this event. The 1954 (ML 6.2) earthquake is located at the southeast end of the mapped trace of the San Jacinto fault, and aftershocks suggest about 15 km of rupture further southeast into an area of folded young sediments with no surface fault trace. This event was preceded by a cluster of small earthquakes which occurred within an 8-hr period 10 weeks before the main event and in the eventual rupture zone. The 1942 (ML 6.3) earthquake is located southwest of the southeast end of the Coyote Creek fault. Large aftershocks of this event are spread over a 15 by 18 km area southwest of the Coyote Creek fault and are not associated with any one fault. The relation of the 1942 event to the San Jacinto fault zone is not simple.

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