Paleoseismology of silent faults in the Central Apennines (Italy): the Campo Imperatore Fault (Gran Sasso Range Fault System)

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F. Galadini
P. Galli
M. Moro


Paleoseismological analyses were performed along the Campo Imperatore Fault (part of the Gran Sasso Range
Fault System) in order to define the seismogenic behaviour (recurrence interval for surface faulting events, elapsed
time since the last activation, maximum expected magnitude). Four trenches were excavated across secondary
faults which are related to the main fault zone. The youngest event (E1) occurred after 3480-3400 years BP;
a previous event (E2) occurred between 7155-7120/7035-6790 years BP and 5590-5565/5545-5475 years BP,
while the oldest one (E3) has a Late Pleistocene age. The chronological interval between the last two displacement
events ranges between 1995 and 6405 years. The minimum elapsed time since the last activation is 800
years, due to the absence of historical earthquakes which may have been caused by the Campo Imperatore Fault
and based on the completeness of the historical catalogues for the large magnitude events in the last eight centuries.
Based on the length of the fault surficial expression, earthquakes with M 6.95 may be expected from the
activation of the entire Gran Sasso Range Fault System. The effects of the fault activation were investigated
through the simulation of a damage scenario obtained by means of the FaCES computer code, made by the
National Seismic Survey for civil protection purposes. The damage scenario shows that the activation of the Gran
Sasso Range Fault System may be responsible for an earthquake with epicentral intensity I0 10.5 MCS, with a
number of collapsed buildings ranging between 7900 and 31100 and a number of damaged buildings ranging between
99 000 and 234 000. The investigated case defines, therefore, a high risk level for the region affected by
the Campo Imperatore Fault.

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How to Cite
Galadini, F., Galli, P. and Moro, M. (2003) “Paleoseismology of silent faults in the Central Apennines (Italy): the Campo Imperatore Fault (Gran Sasso Range Fault System)”, Annals of Geophysics, 46(5). doi: 10.4401/ag-3456.

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