Skip to main content
Log in

Initial analysis of the mechanism of the Wenchuan Earthquake (Southwest China), 12 May 2008

  • Original Paper
  • Published:
Bulletin of Engineering Geology and the Environment Aims and scope Submit manuscript


This short paper reports some initial fieldwork carried out in four locations shortly after the M8.0 Wenchuan Earthquake which took place on 12 May 2008 in Southwest China. The field evidence, notably that obtained in the town of Xiaoyudong, suggests that the primary motion was related to vertical movement along the Longmenshan Fault. The damage seen was consistent with a right-lateral strike-slip component.


Ce court article présente de premiers travaux de terrain réalisés sur quatre sites rapidement après le séisme de Wenchuan, de magnitude 8,0, qui eut lieu le 12 mai 2008 dans le sud-ouest de la Chine. Les observations de terrain, en particulier dans la ville de Xiaoyudong, suggèrent que le premier mouvement correspondait à un déplacement vertical le long de la faille de Longmenshan. Les dommages observés étaient compatibles avec un déplacement à composante de décrochement dextre.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this article

Subscribe and save

Springer+ Basic
EUR 32.99 /Month
  • Get 10 units per month
  • Download Article/Chapter or Ebook
  • 1 Unit = 1 Article or 1 Chapter
  • Cancel anytime
Subscribe now

Buy Now

Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.

Instant access to the full article PDF.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6
Fig. 7

Similar content being viewed by others

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Liu Jianyou.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Faquan, W., Bihong, F., Xiao, L. et al. Initial analysis of the mechanism of the Wenchuan Earthquake (Southwest China), 12 May 2008. Bull Eng Geol Environ 67, 453–455 (2008).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:


Mots clés