Vertical slip rates of active faults of southern Albania inferred from river terraces

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Oswaldo Guzmán
Jean-Louis Mugnier
Riccardo Vassallo
Rexhep Koçi
François Jouanne


Fluvial terraces of Shkumbin, Devoll, Osum and Vjosa rivers (southern Albania and northwestern Greece) are studied in order to quantify the vertical slip rates of the large active faults of the Dinaric-Albanic-Hellenic Alpine fold belt. The spatial and temporal variations of the incision rates along these rivers were estimated from the geomorphological mapping of the Quaternary sediments, the geometry and the dating of the terraces. Eleven terraces levels were identified in Albania from 68 geochronological ages already published or acquired for this work. The five lower terraces of the four studied rivers are well dated (10 new and 23 already published ages). These terraces are younger than 30 ka and their remnants are numerous. Their restoration allows estimating the regional trend of incision rate and the identification of local shifts. We argue that these shifts are linked to the active tectonics when they coincide with the faults already mapped by previous authors. Vertical slip rates for eight active faults in southern Albania are thus estimated for the last 19 ka and vary from ~0.1 to ~2 mm/a. The Lushnje Tepelene Thrust, that extends more than 120 kilometers, has a throw rate that varies from 0.2 to 0.8 mm/a, whereas the active faults of the extensional domain are segmented but are very active, with throw rates reaching locally 2 mm/a.

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How to Cite
Guzmán, O., Mugnier, J.-L., Vassallo, R., Koçi, R. and Jouanne, F. (2014) “Vertical slip rates of active faults of southern Albania inferred from river terraces”, Annals of Geophysics, 56(6). doi: 10.4401/ag-6218.