Earthquake erupts southern Black Forest

GeoForschungszentrum sends out "Task Force Earthquake"

Epicenter of the quake NEIC
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On Sunday morning, the earth in Germany shook: earthquakes of magnitude 5.4 broke thousands of people in a 250 kilometer radius around the Baden-Württemberg town Waldkirch from sleep. Even in Switzerland and France, the shocks were felt. The quake, which was recorded at 2.52, occurred at a depth of twelve kilometers and lasted several seconds. However, the damage in the southern Black Forest region was low.

To further investigate the causes of the Waldkirch earthquake, the GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam (GFZ) sent the German Task Force Earthquake to the region on Sunday. The head of the earthquake task force, Professor Jochen Zschau (GFZ Potsdam) explains the purpose of the mission: "By measuring and investigating the aftershocks, we obtain detailed information on the quake mechanism. We can also deduce from this how the seismic rupture runs in the earth's crust and how it can develop further. "

Analyzes of this kind are indispensable for the assessment of further earthquake risks and for the development of an adequate precautionary strategy. Together with the University of Karlsruhe, the GFZ Potsdam has set up a Competence Center CEDIM (Center for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Technology), which presented the first risk maps specifically for Baden-Württemberg in May this year.

Jochen Zschau is one of the two spokespersons of CEDIM and explains the relatively small damage caused by the earthquake by the appropriate construction standards: "It can be seen that pension planning pays off in the development of economically justifiable protective measures. However, the earthquake did not hit a city directly. It would not have gone so well. "

The Upper Rhine Graben is one of the most seismically active zones in Germany. Professor Rolf Emmermann, CEO of the GFZ Potsdam, commented: "The deployment of the Earthquake Task Force is taking place against the background of certain natural hazards in Germany whose risk potential is underestimated. In this context, the GeoForschungsZentrum has made another contribution to risk prevention and a 'culture of prevention' with the founding of CEDIM. "Ad

(GFZ Potsdam, 06.12.2004 - NPO)