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https://doi.org/10.5194/se-2020-136
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/se-2020-136
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  16 Sep 2020

16 Sep 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal SE.

Seismic evidences of the COVID-19 lockdown measures: Eastern Sicily case of study

Andrea Cannata1,2, Flavio Cannavò2, Giuseppe Di Grazia2, Marco Aliotta2, Carmelo Cassisi2, Raphael S. M. De Plaen3, Stefano Gresta1, Thomas Lecocq4, Placido Montalto2, and Mariangela Sciotto2 Andrea Cannata et al.
  • 1Dipartimento di Scienze Biologiche, Geologiche e Ambientali, Università Degli Studi di Catania, Catania, Italy
  • 2Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Osservatorio Etneo, Catania, Italy
  • 3Centro de Geociencias, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Campus Juriquilla, Querétaro, Mexico
  • 4Seismology-Gravimetry, Royal Observatory of Belgium, Avenue circulaire 3, 1180 Brussels, Belgium

Abstract. During the COVID-19 pandemic, most countries worldwide put in place social interventions, consisting of restricting the mobility of citizens, aimed at slowing and mitigating the spread of the epidemic. In particular, Italy, as the first European country violently struck by the COVID-19 outbreak, applied a sequence of progressive restrictions to reduce both human mobility and human-to-human contacts from the end of February to mid-March 2020. Here, we analysed the seismic signatures of these lockdown measures in the densely populated Eastern Sicily, characterised by the presence of a permanent seismic network used for both seismic and volcanic monitoring. We specifically emphasize how the amount of the amplitude reduction of anthropogenic seismic noise (reaching ~50–60%), its temporal pattern and spectral content are strongly station-dependent. As for the latter, we exhibited that on average the frequencies above 10 Hz are the most influenced by the anthropogenic seismic noise. Finally, we found an impressive similarity between the temporal patterns of anthropogenic seismic noise and human mobility, as quantified by the mobile phone-derived data shared by Google, Facebook and Apple. These results further confirm how seismic data, routinely acquired worldwide for seismic and volcanic surveillance, can be used to monitor human mobility too.

Andrea Cannata et al.

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Andrea Cannata et al.

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Latest update: 18 Sep 2020
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Short summary
During the COVID-19 pandemic, most countries put in place social interventions, aimed at restricting human mobility, which caused a decrease in the seismic noise, generated by human activities and called anthropogenic seismic noise. In particular, in the densely populated Eastern Sicily, we observed a decrease in the seismic amplitude reaching 50 %. We also found an impressive similarity between the patterns of this seismic noise and human mobility, as quantified by the mobile phone-derived data.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, most countries put in place social interventions, aimed at...
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