Tearing the terroir: Details and implications of surface rupture and...

DeLong, S., A. Donnellan, D. J. Ponti, R. S. Rubin, J. J. Lienkaemper, C. S. Prentice, T. E. Dawson, G. Seitz, D. P. Schwartz, K. Hudnut, C. Rosa, A. Pickering, and J. W. Parker (2016), Tearing the terroir: Details and implications of surface rupture and deformation from the 24 August 2014 M6.0 South Napa earthquake, California, Earth and Space Science, 3, 416-430, doi:10.1002/2016EA000176.

The Mw 6.0 South Napa earthquake of 24 August 2014 caused slip on several active fault strands within the West Napa Fault Zone (WNFZ). Field mapping identified 12.5 km of surface rupture. These field observations, near-field geodesy and space geodesy, together provide evidence for more than ~30 km of surface deformation with a relatively complex distribution across a number of subparallel lineaments. Along a ~7 km section north of the epicenter, the surface rupture is confined to a single trace that cuts alluvial deposits, reoccupying a low-slope scarp. The rupture continued northward onto at least four other traces through subparallel ridges and valleys. Postseismic slip exceeded coseismic slip along much of the southern part of the main rupture trace with total slip 1 year postevent approaching 0.5 m at locations where only a few centimeters were measured the day of the earthquake. Analysis of airborne interferometric synthetic aperture radar data provides slip distributions along fault traces, indicates connectivity and extent of secondary traces, and confirms that postseismic slip only occurred on the main trace of the fault, perhaps indicating secondary structures ruptured as coseismic triggered slip. Previous mapping identified the WNFZ as a zone of distributed faulting, and this was generally borne out by the complex 2014 rupture pattern. Implications for hazard analysis in similar settings include the need to consider the possibility of complex surface rupture in areas of complex topography, especially where multiple potentially Quaternary-active fault strands can be mapped.

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Earth Surface & Interior Program (ESI)