EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

A database of the environmental effects associated to the December 29th, 2020 Mw 6.4 Petrinja earthquake (Croatia)

Matija Vukovski1, Marko Budić1, Marko Špelić1, Josip Barbača1, Nikola Belić1, Vlatko Brčić1, Radovan Filjak1, Tvrtko Korbar1, Branko Kordić1, Tomislav Kurečić1, Damir Palenik1, Neven Bočić2, Jure Atanackov3, Miloš Bavec3, Rok Brajkovič3, Bogomir Celarc3, Ana Novak3,4, Matevž Novak3, Petra Jamšek Rupnik3, Sara Amoroso5,6, Francesca Romana Cinti5, Riccardo Civico5, Daniela Pantosti5, Stefano Pucci5, Tullio Ricci5, Paolo Boncio6, Francesco Lezzi6, Bruno Pace6, Alessio Testa6, Anna Maria Blumetti7, Pio Di Manna7, Lucilla Benedetti8, Maxime Hnriquet8, Adrien Moulin8, and Stéphane Baize9
Matija Vukovski et al.
  • 1Croatian Geological Survey, Ul. Milana Sachsa 2, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2University of Zagreb, Faculty of Science, Department of Geography, Division of Physical Geography, Marulićev trg 19/II, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
  • 3Geological Survey of Slovenia, Dimičeva ul. 14, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
  • 4University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Natural Sciences and Engineering, Department of Geology, Aškerčeva 12, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
  • 5Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Rome, Italy
  • 6Department of Engineering and Geology, University of Chieti-Pescara, Pescara, Italy
  • 7Istituto Superiore per la Protezione e la Ricerca Ambientale, Via Vitaliano Brancati 48, 00144 Roma, Italy
  • 8CEREGE, AixMarseilleUniv, CNRS, IRD, INRA, Coll France, Aix en Provence, France
  • 9BERSSIN, Institut de Radioprotection et de Sûreté Nucléaire, Fontenay-aux-Roses, France

On December 29th, 2020, a strong Mw 6.4 earthquake hit central Croatia. The epicenter was located approximately 3 km southwest of Petrinja, and the intensity was estimated to VIII-IX EMS. The earthquake led to significant environmental effects related to earthquake magnitude, focal depth, and geological and geotechnical properties of the affected area.
The Croatian Geological Survey (HGI-CGS) conducted extensive geological and geodetic surveys starting a few hours following the main shock to measure the earthquake’s effects,
including those on infrastructures. Ten geologists from the Department of Geology carried out surveys from Decmber 31st, 2020 to January 7th, 2021 along the potential seismogenic source (inferred from geological maps and InSAR data) and in the wider epicentral area that suffered significant damage (e.g., Glina and Sisak).
During a second phase, researchers from the University of Zagreb (PMF UniZG), Slovenia (GeoZS), Italy (INGV, ISPRA, U. Chieti) and France (CEREGE, IRSN) were mobilized to complete the observations. The collaboration with these geologists allowed to deepen the investigations and to bring further detail to quantify the effects. The surveys were then compiled based on data formats used by the European Community, namely those of the INGV EMERGEO team (Villani et al., 2017; for environmental effects including surface ruptures and liquefaction) and those of the SURE group (Baize et al., 2019 for surface ruptures).
These observations revealed that the earthquake triggered a discontinuous, few km-long surface rupture with a maximum displacement of about 20 cm, which is consistent with the lower average of observations made on similar events (Wells and Coppersmith, 1994). Liquefaction spread over several tens of square kilometers mostly in river plains, the most distant being about 20 km from the epicenter (to be confirmed!). Other observed effects include lateral spreading, landslides, groundwater regime changes, rockfalls, and various infrastructure damage.
The compilation of the acquired dataset into a unified database, consistent with database of other historical and recent events, is essential for establishing reliable empirical relations between geological effects and physical characteristics of earthquakes (magnitude, depth). This forms the basis for seismic hazard assessments, whether for “surface rupture”, “liquefaction”, or “ground-shaking” potential.

How to cite: Vukovski, M., Budić, M., Špelić, M., Barbača, J., Belić, N., Brčić, V., Filjak, R., Korbar, T., Kordić, B., Kurečić, T., Palenik, D., Bočić, N., Atanackov, J., Bavec, M., Brajkovič, R., Celarc, B., Novak, A., Novak, M., Jamšek Rupnik, P., Amoroso, S., Cinti, F. R., Civico, R., Pantosti, D., Pucci, S., Ricci, T., Boncio, P., Lezzi, F., Pace, B., Testa, A., Blumetti, A. M., Di Manna, P., Benedetti, L., Hnriquet, M., Moulin, A., and Baize, S.: A database of the environmental effects associated to the December 29th, 2020 Mw 6.4 Petrinja earthquake (Croatia), EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-16574,, 2021.

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