Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/se-2021-73
https://doi.org/10.5194/se-2021-73

  14 Jun 2021

14 Jun 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal SE.

Late Quaternary faulting in southern Matese (central Italy): implications for earthquake potential in the southern Apennines

Paolo Boncio1,2, Eugenio Auciello3, Vincenzo Amato4, Pietro Aucelli5, Paola Petrosino6, Anna Chiara Tangari1, and Brian Jicha7 Paolo Boncio et al.
  • 1Department DiSPUTer, Università degli Studi G. d’Annunzio Chieti - Pescara, Chieti, 66100, Italy
  • 2CRUST – Interuniversity Center for 3D Seismotectonics with territorial Applications, Chieti, 66100, Italy
  • 3Geoscience practitioner, Pesche (IS), Italy
  • 4Department of Biosciences and Territory, Università degli Studi del Molise, Pesche (IS), 86090, Italy
  • 5Department of Science and Technology, Università degli Studi di Napoli Parthenope, Neaples, 80133, Italy
  • 6Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II, Department of Earth, Environmental and Resources Sciences, Neaples, 80126, Italy
  • 7University of Wisconsin-Madison, Department of Geoscience, Madison, Wisconsin 53706-1692, USA

Abstract. We studied in detail the Gioia Sannitica active normal fault (GF) along the Southern Matese Fault system in the southern Apennines of Italy. The current activity of the fault system and its potential to produce strong earthquakes have been underestimated so far, and are now defined. Precise mapping of the GF fault trace on a 1 : 20,000 geological map and several point data on geometry, kinematics and throw rate are made available in electronic format. The GF, and in general the entire fault system along the southern Matese mountain front, is made of slowly-slipping faults, with a long active history revealed by the large geologic offsets, mature geomorphology, and complex fault pattern and kinematics. Present activity has resulted in Late Quaternary fault scarps resurrecting the foot of the mountain front, and Holocene surface faulting. The slip rate varies along-strike, with maximum Late Pleistocene – Holocene throw rate of ~0.5 mm/yr. Activation of the 11.5 km-long GF can produce up to M 6.1 earthquakes. If activated together with the 18 km-long Ailano-Piedimonte Matese fault (APMF), the seismogenic potential would be M 6.8. The slip history of the two faults is compatible with a contemporaneous rupture. The observed Holocene displacements on the GF and APMF are compatible with activations during some poorly known historical earthquakes, such as the 1293 (M 5.8), 1349 (M 6.8; southern prolongation of the rupture on the Aquae Iuliae fault?) and CE 346 earthquakes. A fault rupture during the 847 poorly-constrained historical earthquake is also compatible with the dated displacements.

Paolo Boncio et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on se-2021-73', Francesco Pavano, 15 Jul 2021
  • RC2: 'Comment on se-2021-73', Ettore Valente, 15 Jul 2021
  • RC3: 'Comment on se-2021-73', Alessandro Maria Michetti, 20 Jul 2021

Paolo Boncio et al.

Paolo Boncio et al.

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Short summary
We studied the Gioia Sannitica active normal fault (GF) in southern Apennines (Italy). The GF is made of slowly-slipping faults, with a long slip history. Present activity has resulted in Late Quaternary fault scarps, and Holocene surface faulting. The maximum Late Quaternary throw rate is ~0.5 mm/yr. Activation of the 11.5 km-long GF can produce up to M 6.1 earthquakes. If activated together with the entire Southern Matese Fault system, the seismogenic potential would be M 6.8.