Magnitude 4.3 - NORTHERN CALIFORNIA

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2009 March 30 17:40:29 UTC

Earthquake Details

  • This event has been reviewed by a seismologist.
Magnitude4.3
Date-Time
Location37.285°N, 121.620°W
Depth6.2 km (3.9 miles)
RegionNORTHERN CALIFORNIA
Distances25 km (15 miles) ESE of San Jose, California
30 km (20 miles) N of Gilroy, California
40 km (25 miles) SE of Fremont, California
145 km (90 miles) S of SACRAMENTO, California
Location Uncertaintyhorizontal +/- 0.1 km (0.1 miles); depth +/- 0.3 km (0.2 miles)
ParametersNST= 99, Nph= 99, Dmin=6.8 km, Rmss=0.08 sec, Gp= 58°,
M-type=regional moment magnitude (Mw), Version=3
Source
Event IDnc40234037
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Earthquake Summary

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Tectonic Summary

The quake occurred on a north-south oriented fault about 3 km to the east of the of the Calaveras fault as defined by the last 40 years of earthquake epicenters. The moment tensor and first-motion mechanisms confirm this fault orientation. The fault has no name and is not mapped at the surface of the Earth. The background seismicity defines a trend that extends for about 10km. The fault is similar in orientation and tectonics to the fault which was ruptured by the Mt. Lewis sequence in 1986 (M5.7). However, the Mt. Lewis sequence lasted for 491 days and contained 1930 aftershocks. In contrast, as of Mar 30 17:10:53 PDT 2009 there were only 4 located aftershocks with the largest having a magnitude of 1.2. Even though this quake is on a similar structure, it is not exhibiting the similar behavior. The fault terminates to the south on the Calaveras fault in the middle of the 1984 M6.2 Morgan Hill rupture zone. The penultimate central Calaveras earthquake was in 1911, 73 earlier. It has been about 25 years since 1984, so the likelihood that the Calaveras fault has accumulated sufficient stress to sustain another M6 quake is quite low. The 30-year probability for a M>6.7 earthquake on the central section of the Calaveras fault is only a few percent (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2003/of03-214/WG02_OFR-03-214_Chapter6.pdf). It is therefore unlikely that this M4.3 earthquake will trigger a significant earthquake on this section of the Calaveras fault. Source: US Geological Survey, Menlo Park CA