Fire Earth

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6.2Mw Quake Strikes Spain

Posted by feww on April 12, 2010

Strong Magnitude 6.2 Earthquake Strikes Near Granada, Spain

The earthquake occurred at a depth of about 620km on Sunday April 11, 2010 at at 22:08:11UTC with the epicenter located at 37.05°N, 3.49°W.

The event occurred near the African-Eurasian plate-boundary in the Betic Cordillera  Zone, a part of the Gibraltar Arc.

The epicenter was located about 200km (166 degrees) south of Columba volcano, the youngest vent in the Calatrava volcanic field.

There was no immediate report of damage or injuries as of posting. Little damage should occur because the hypocenter was located deep beneath the surface, at a depth of about 620km.

Fire-Earth Moderators interpret the event as follows:
1. Sign of increased tectonic activity in the African and Eurasian plates boundaries.
2. Possible new phase of volcanic unrest/activity in the Calatrava volcanic field.

Source: European-Mediterranean Seismological Center. Click image to enlarge.

Summary of Earthquake Details:

  • Magnitude: 6.2
  • Region:  SPAIN
  • Date/time 2010-04-11 at 22:08:11.4 UTC
  • Location: 37.05°N, 3.49°W
  • Depth: 624 km (+/- 4km)
  • Distances:
    • 16 km SE of Granada (pop 238,248 ; local time 00:08 2010-04-12)
    • 12 km SE of La zubia (pop 15,652 ; local time 00:08 2010-04-12)
    • 10 km S of Monachil (pop 5,843 ; local time 00:08 2010-04-12)
    • 90 km ENE of Malaga
    • 95 km WNW of Almeria
    • 375 km S of MADRID

UPDATE and Additional Information:

The magnitude of this earthquake has been raised to 6.3Mw by USGS/EHP.

Tectonic Summary

The seismotectonics of the April 11, 2010 M6.3 Spanish earthquake is enigmatic, but the occurrence of deep earthquakes beneath this region of Spain are well-documented. The location of the April 11, 2010 M6.3 and it’s unusual depth of 616 km suggests that it is related to the well-studied M7.1 deep Spanish earthquake of March 24, 1954. The epicenter of the 1954 earthquake, based on the distribution of ground shaking at the surface (macroseismicity) and limited instrumental recordings of the earthquake, is beneath the town of Dúrcal, 20 km south of Granada. Since the 1954 earthquake, a handful of small magnitude earthquakes (3 and smaller) have occurred in approximately the same location (Buforn et al., 1991). Southwest of the April 11, 2010 M6.3 earthquake in the area of the Alboran Sea, convergences of the African and Eurasian plates does produce a well-defined zone of small magnitude (M < 4) to depth of 200 km. Other than the localized zone of seismicity near 600 km depth, there are no known earthquakes between 200 km and 600 km depth.

Buforn, E., Udias, A., and Madariaga, R., 1991, Intermediate and deep earthquakes in Spain: Pure and Applied Geophysics, v. 136, p. 375–393.
Source: USGS/EHP

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