Seismotectonic characterization of the Becerreá area (NW Spain)


  • C. LÓPEZ FERNÁNDEZ Department of Geology, University of Oviedo. C/Arias de Velasco s/n 33.005 Oviedo, Spain.
  • J.A. PULGAR Department of Geology, University of Oviedo. C/Arias de Velasco s/n 33.005 Oviedo, Spain.
  • J. DÍAZ Deparment of Structure and Dynamics of the Earth, Institute of Earth Sciences J. Almera, CSIC, Barcelona, Spain
  • J. GALLART Deparment of Structure and Dynamics of the Earth, Institute of Earth Sciences J. Almera, CSIC, Barcelona, Spain
  • J.M. GONZÁLEZ CORTINA Department of Geology, University of Oviedo. C/Arias de Velasco s/n 33.005 Oviedo, Spain.
  • M. RUIZ Deparment of Structure and Dynamics of the Earth, Institute of Earth Sciences J. Almera, CSIC, Barcelona, Spain



Northwest Iberia Becerreá fault, Intraplate earthquakes, Fault interaction, Temporary array


The NW sector of the Iberian Peninsula has been classically considered as a seismically stable area, with only dispersed and low-magnitude activity. Around the village of Becerreá (Lugo) a significant concentration of earthquakes is observed. Since the beginning of instrumental record in 1979, seven seismic crisis have been reported in that zone, including 14 events of magnitude gt>4 and a larger event of magnitude 5.1mbLg (VII EMS) in 1997. Even if this seismicity is to be related to the general compressive regime between Africa and Eurasia, the seismotectonic characterization of the area is still controversial, as the different hypotheses considered are based on insufficiently accurate data. New insights to the problem are discussed here, coming from the deployment of a seismic portable network between 1999 and 2002, which has provided new accurate seismic data. The corresponding events are distributed around a subvertical axis, reaching a depth of 12km, and epicentres tend to concentrate beneath the intersection of the main Becerreá fault and secondary, ENE/WSW oriented faults. This intersection structure is thus interpreted as being responsible for the relatively high level of seismic activity over the area.


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