Date of Graduation

5-2014

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Geography (MA)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Geosciences

Advisor

Tom Paradise

Committee Member

John Dixon

Second Committee Member

Gregory Dummond

Keywords

Arkansas, Conway, Arkansas, Hazard, Hazard and Risk Management, Rebuilding Cost, Seismicity

Abstract

Almost 20 years after a remarkable swarm of more than 30,000 micro-earthquakes, a new swarm revisited the same region of central Arkansas, less than 30 miles northeast of Conway, Arkansas. A main shock on May 4, 2001 of magnitude MR = 4.4 was followed by a large number of aftershocks in a small crustal volume about 2,500 events for about 2 months. Preliminary locations of aftershocks from the portable network together with the locations based on data from regional networks lead us to conclude that both swarms (2001 and 1982) occupy virtually the same crustal volume. In following years several other active faults were found in Arkansas, yet few studies have been done to investigate the potential damages that an earthquake would produce in Central Arkansas.

The HAZUS-MH software tool, developed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the National Institute of Building Sciences was used to identify areas most physically and socially vulnerable to earthquake ground shaking and to present earthquake loss estimations for downtown Conway, Arkansas for this study. As the thrust of this research, it was found that the accuracy of the loss estimation is dependent on several factors. The greatest amount of losses occurred when (a) stronger ground shaking occurred greater than MR=5.0 hitting (b)unreinforced masonry such as non rebar brick and mortar and (c)commercial buildings such as large open-beamed warehouses (d) in the afternoon 3pm-5pm.

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