Best practice of macroseismic intensity assessment applied to the earthquake catalogue of southwestern Germany
Brüstle, Wolfgang; Braumann, Uwe; Hock, Silke; Rodler, Fee-Alexandra, 2020: Best practice of macroseismic intensity assessment applied to the earthquake catalogue of southwestern Germany. In: Historical Earthquakes, Paleoseismology, Neotectonics and Seismic Hazard: New Insights and Suggested Procedures: 7 - 35, DOI: 10.23689/fidgeo-3864.
The earthquake catalogue of southwestern Germany for the last millennium now contains about 30,000 digital macroseismic intensity data points (IDPs). Intensity assessments are based mainly on primary sources using the European Macroseismic Scale 1998 (EMS). The article describes a guideline for best practice of conventional macroseismic evaluation in application to historical and modern-time earthquakes in SW-Germany. Suitability of various diagnostics for intensity assessment is discussed. Assumptions to estimate damage grades and vulnerability classes of buildings are presented. Data restrictions and treatment of special cases are outlined. Further topics are quantification of uncertainties and IDP quality as well as substitutes for intensity. An essential task is to bridge the gap between information from historical sources and seismological needs for use in the earthquake catalogue, thus all issues have a focus on historical earthquakes. Questions of completeness, subjectivity, transparency, and interdisciplinary work are addressed also. Special emphasis is given to a well balanced use of the EMS scale throughout all time periods leading to consistent assessments in the catalogue.
European Macroseismic Scale