The Lâalam (Béjaïa, North-East Algeria) Moderate Earthquake (Mw = 5.2) on March 20, 2006
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On March 20, 2006, a moderate-magnitude earthquake of Mw 5.2 hit the region of the Babors mountains, a region located two hundred km east of Algiers (capital of Algeria). More precisely, the epicentre occurred 40 km south-east of Béjaïa, the second most important city in the Kabylian region. The earthquake impacted an area with a radius of about 70 km and caused the death of four persons and injured 68. Damage was mainly observed in Lâalam village (district of Kherrata) where some buildings and old houses were affected. Damage was mainly due to a moderate landslide triggered by the earthquake. Rock falls were also observed near the main cliffs. The maximum observed intensity I0 was estimated to VII (EMS-98 scale). According to the main shock focal mechanism solution and the spatial distribution of aftershocks, the main shock was reliably found to have been generated by an NS sinistral strike-slip fault. The compressive stress axis σ1, oriented N325, is in agreement with the direction of convergence between Eurasia and Africa.
KeywordsLâalam earthquake Lâalam landslide Stress tensor inversion Aftershock study Babors chain seismicity
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