Earthquakes at three localities in eastern North America have been attributed on geological and seismological grounds to compressional reactivation of some of the late Proterozoic or early Paleozoic normal faults in the northeast-trending Iapetan passive margin. Assessment of seismic hazard can be aided by identifying the boundaries of the area of Iapetan faulting. A previous paper located the northwestern boundary. This report interprets deep seismic-reflection profiles as showing that the margin comprises a seismically active northwestern part, where Precambrian crust contains some Iapetan faults but remains mostly as it was formed, and a southeastern part, where later deformations likely destroyed or modified the Precambrian crust and Iapetan faults. Accordingly, the boundary between the northwestern and southeastern parts of the margin, which coincides approximately with the Appalachian gravity gradient, can be taken as the southeastern limit of potentially seismogenic Iapetan faults.

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