Article

 

The 1967 Caracas earthquake: fault geometry, direction of rupture propagation and seismotectonic implications Public Deposited

Downloadable Content

Download PDF
https://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/articles/q237ht38m

Descriptions

Attribute NameValues
Creator
Abstract
  • The fault plane orientation of the July 30, 1967, Caracas earthquake (Mw=6.6) has been a source of controversy for several years. This strike-slip event was originally thought to have occurred on an east-­west oriented fault plane, reflecting the relative motion between the Caribbean and South American plates. More recently, however, the complex seismic radiation from this event was interpreted as being indicative of a north-south striking fault that ruptured along three en echelon segments. In this study we synthesize evidence based on the intensity and damage reports, the distribution of aftershocks, and the results of a joint formal inversion of the P and SH waves and show that these data clearly indicate that the rupture of the 1967 earthquake occurred on an east-west trending fault system. Using a master event technique, the largest aftershock, which occurred 40 min after the main event, is shown to lie 50 km east of the epicenter of the mainshock. The epicentral distances of small aftershocks registered in Caracas, based on the S-P arrival time differences and the polarizations of the P waves, are also consistent with these events occurring on an east-west oriented fault system north of Caracas. A joint inversion of the teleseismic P and SH waves, recorded on long-period seismographs of the World-Wide Standardized Seismographic Network, shows that in a time frame of 65 s, four distinct bursts of seismic moment release (subevents) occurred, with a total seismic moment of 8.6 x 1018 Nm. The first three subevents triggered sequentially from west to east, in a direction that is almost identical to the east-west trending nodal planes of the source mechanisms. The average depth of these three subevents is 14 km. The fourth, and last identifiable, subevent of the sequence shows a reverse faulting mechanism with the nodal planes oriented roughly east­west. It occurred at a 21-km depth, about 50 km to the north of the fault zone defined by the strike-slip subevents. This fourth subevent appears to reflect compressional deformation of the southern Caribbean, possibly related to underthrusting along the proposed Curaçao trench. The complexity of the fault system causing the 1967 earthquake suggests that the relative motion along the Caribbean-South America plate boundary in central Venezuela is taken up over a broad, highly faulted, and highly stressed zone of deformation and not by a simple, major throughgoing fault.
Resource Type
Date Available
Date Issued
Citation
  • Suarez, G., & Nabelek, J. (1990). The 1967 Caracas earthquake: fault geometry, direction of rupture propagation and seismotectonic implications. Journal of Geophyscal Research, 95(B11), 17459-17474.
Journal Title
Journal Volume
  • 95
Rights Statement
Funding Statement (additional comments about funding)
  • Lamont-Doherty Postdoctoral Fellowship.NSF grant EAR 96187.
Publisher
Language
Replaces
Additional Information
  • description.provenance : Approved for entry into archive by Digital Production(digitalproduc@gmail.com) on 2010-10-05T22:05:24Z (GMT) No. of bitstreams: 1 Suarez_and_Nabelek_JGR_1990.pdf: 1309704 bytes, checksum: 66ed98c6489d05fad31b6ea49a257ee3 (MD5)
  • description.provenance : Submitted by Eric Vanderwall (ewscanner@gmail.com) on 2010-09-14T20:48:32Z No. of bitstreams: 1 Suarez_and_Nabelek_JGR_1990.pdf: 1309704 bytes, checksum: 66ed98c6489d05fad31b6ea49a257ee3 (MD5)
  • description.provenance : Made available in DSpace on 2010-10-05T22:05:24Z (GMT). No. of bitstreams: 1 Suarez_and_Nabelek_JGR_1990.pdf: 1309704 bytes, checksum: 66ed98c6489d05fad31b6ea49a257ee3 (MD5) Previous issue date: 1990-10-10

Relationships

Parents:

This work has no parents.

Items