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Swiss Seismological Service (SED)

The Swiss Seismological Service (SED) at ETH Zurich is the federal agency for earthquakes. Its activities are integrated in the federal action plan for earthquake precaution.

Felt Earthquakes in Switzerland

Local Time
Mag.
Location
Felt?
2017-07-21  19:03 3.6 Lago di Garda I Probably not felt
2017-07-08  02:18 2.7 CHATEAU-D'OEX VD Felt
2017-07-02  12:53 2.3 Gelterkinden BL Slightly felt
2017-07-01  11:29 2.6 CHATEAU-D'OEX VD Slightly felt
2017-07-01  10:10 4.3 CHATEAU-D'OEX VD Widely felt

Latest Earthquakes

Local Time
Magnitude
Location
2017-07-24 08:43 0.5 CHATEAU-D'OEX VD
2017-07-23 20:07 2.4 Lago di Garda I
2017-07-22 21:59 2.1 Lago di Garda I
2017-07-22 15:29 0.1 Sanetschpass VS

Swiss Earthquakes Counter

since 01.01.2017 
000

Recent earthquakes magnitude 4.5 or greater

Time (UTC)
Mag.
Region
2017-07-22 17:25:46 4.6 Dodecanese Islands, Greece
2017-07-22 17:09:21 4.7 Dodecanese Islands, Greece
2017-07-21 17:09:45 5.0 Dodecanese Islands, Greece
2017-07-21 10:36:56 4.5 CRETE, GREECE
2017-07-21 07:42:51 4.7 WESTERN IRAN
2017-07-21 05:04:00 4.5 DODECANESE IS.-TURKEY BORDER REG
2017-07-21 02:12:34 4.5 DODECANESE IS.-TURKEY BORDER REG
2017-07-21 01:38:51 4.5 WESTERN TURKEY
2017-07-20 23:23:51 4.7 Dodecanese Islands, Greece
2017-07-20 22:52:57 4.7 Dodecanese Islands, Gre
2017-07-20 22:31:11 6.7 DODECANESE IS.-TURKEY BORDER REG
2017-07-20 06:22:36 4.5 AZERBAIJAN
2017-07-16 04:49:24 4.5 Svalbard, Norway, region

Recent earthquakes magnitude 6 or greater

UTC Time
Magnitude
Location
2017-07-20 22:31:11 6.7 DODECANESE IS.-TURKEY BORDER REG
2017-07-18 02:05:19 6.4 Near coast of Peru
2017-07-18 02:05:18 6.4 Near coast of Peru
2017-07-17 23:34:13 7.7 Komandorsky Islands, Russia, region
2017-07-17 11:05:08 6.2 Komandorsky Islands, Russia, region
2017-07-13 03:36:09 6.4 New Ireland, Papua New Guinea, region
2017-07-12 19:47:32 6.4 Sea of Japan
2017-07-11 07:07:13 6.0 South Indian Ocean
NEWS

07/21/2017

[Available in DE/FR] Starkes Erdbeben bei Bodrum (Türkei) und Kos (Griechenland)

Am Freitag, 21.07.2017 hat sich um 01:31 Uhr Ortszeit (00:31 Uhr MESZ) ein Erdbeben der Magnitude 6.7 ereignet. Das Epizentrum befand sich ca. 12 km südlich vom türkischen Ort Bodrum und ca. 12 km östlich vom Ort Kos auf der gleichnamigen griechischen Insel. Die Herdtiefe betrug ungefähr 10 km. Durch das Beben wurde auch ein kleiner Tsunami ausgelöst. Das Erdbeben wurde in weiten Teilen der türkischen Ägäis und der griechischen, südlichen Ägäis verspürt und führte auch zu Gebäudeschäden und Verletzten. Auf Kos wurden zwei Todesopfer gemeldet.

Nachbeben in der Umgebung des Epizentrums sind in den nächsten Tagen und Wochen mit Sicherheit zu erwarten, einige dieser Nachbeben werden deutlich spürbar sein oder  gar weitere Schäden anrichten. Im direkten Schadengebiet ist mit Beeinträchtigungen der Infrastruktur zu rechnen. Für offizielle Reisewarnungen ist das EDA zuständig. Personen, die planen in nächster Zeit in die betroffenen Gebiete zu reisen,  sollten sich bei konkreten Fragen an ihren Reiseveranstalter wenden.

Die Wahrscheinlichkeit, dass es in den nächsten Tagen oder Wochen zu einem weiteren, ähnlich starken oder gar noch grösseren Beben in der Region Kos/Bodrum kommt, ist sehr gering. Allerdings ist sie erfahrungsgemäss deutlich erhöht verglichen mit dem langjährigen Mittel.

Erdbeben der Stärke 6 und mehr sind in der gesamten Ägäis und den angrenzenden Gebieten im Prinzip überall und jederzeit möglich, die Region hat generell eine der höchsten seismischen Gefährdungen in Europa und im Mittelmeerraum.

Seit 1900 haben sich im Umkreis von ca. 150 km um das Epizentrum des aktuellen Bebens sieben Erdbeben mit Magnituden von grösser als 6.5 ereignet (Quelle: International Seismological Center). Das stärkste wies eine Magnitude von 7.5 auf und ereignete sich 1956 südlich der Insel Amargos (ca. 130 km westlich des aktuellen Bebens). 1926 ereignete sich ein Beben der Stärke 6.9 ca. 15 km westlich von Kos.

07/01/2017

Strongly felt earthquake close to Château d’Oex (VD)

Strongly felt earthquake close to Château d’Oex (VD)

An earthquake with a local magnitude of 4.3 occurred on Saturday 1st July 2017 at 10:10 (local time) close to Château d’Oex (VD) at a shallow depth, approximately 4km. It was strongly felt in the epicentral region (Pays-d’Enhaut). Slight damages are probable in this region. It was felt in the canton Vaud, Fribourg, in the Valais and in canton Bern. More than 1300 testimonies were posted on our website in 2 hours.

The seismicity in this zone has been elevated since 2016 and several events up to magnitude 2.7 were felt in 2016 and 2017, the last one on 13th May. Saturday’s earthquake was clearly stronger. The M4.3 is part of a sequence that we expect will continue with lower magnitude events that will last for weeks, or even months. Some of them, like that at 11:29 (magnitude 2.6) will be felt in the epicentral region, and the population should expect additional quakes in the coming days. An event as strong as that of Saturday or even stronger cannot be ruled out but has a relatively low probability.

The earthquake is related to the rupture of a normal fault (extension) oriented E-W, as the previous events recorded since 2016. A broadband moment tensor inversion also suggests a shallow event with moment magnitude Mw4.0 and a normal focal mechanism. The station SCOD in the town of Château d'Oex recorded a strong motion acceleration of 1.5m/s2 – this is the second largest instrumental recording in Switzerland.

Historically, this region has been hit by an earthquake in 1770 also close to Château d’Oex, for which the magnitude was estimated to 5.2 and the epicentral intensity of VI (obtained from the damages). By comparison, Saturday’s earthquake has an epicentral intensity of V.

In Switzerland, an earthquake of magnitude greater than 4 occurs on average every year. Another earthquake of magnitude 4.6 occurred in March this year in canton Glarus with relatively similar consequences across a larger area.

The colored squares on the map show where the earthquake was felt and reported to us. In the background, the instrumentally recorded intensity is shown.

06/26/2017

Landslide and Flood in Greenland

Landslide and Flood in Greenland

On Saturday evening on 17 June 2017, a large landslide occurred in northwestern Greenland, around 20 km from the small fishing village of Nuugaatsiaq. Shortly afterwards, waves inundated much of the village, producing widespread destruction - 11 houses were swept out to sea, and four people are missing; in total 200 people have been evacuated from three villages in the region. The slide generated seismic energy visible across the globe, and lit up all stations from the GLISN seismic network, built through an international effort over the last decade with significant funding from the US National Science Foundation, Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland, Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), and eight other international partners.

Seismic data have provided important early constraints on the slide event. A key station is NUUG, in the village of Nuugaatsiaq, one of the three stations in northwestern Greenland built and operated by the Swiss Seismological Service with the support of SNSF. These stations not only recorded the landslide signal but also the sea waves inundating the village as a result of the fjord seiche. Additional information about the landslide signals can be found here.

Further information about the seismic monitoring of glaciers, the primary purpose of this seismic network in Greenland, can be accessed here.

06/16/2017

A seismic Risk Model for Switzerland

A seismic Risk Model for Switzerland

What damage could earthquakes cause in Switzerland? At present, only a patchy answer can be given to this important question. Thanks to the Swiss seismic hazard model developed by the Swiss Seismological Service (SED) at ETH Zurich, we know where and how often certain types of earthquake can be expected and how strong the tremors they cause will be at a given location. Yet, it remains largely unclear what damage earthquakes could cause to buildings and infrastructure. The Federal Council has now commissioned the SED, in cooperation with the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) and the Federal Office for Civil Protection (FOCP), to plug this gap and devise a seismic risk model by 2022.

Based on the seismic hazard, the risk model takes account of the influence of the local subsurface and of the vulnerability and value of buildings and infrastructure. In future it will enable cantonal and national authorities to draw up improved risk overviews and use them to optimise their planning. Besides prevention, the model will serve to quickly assess where damage can be expected in the occurrence of an event. The development of the model is being financed by contributions from the FOEN, FOCP and ETH.

In addition, the earthquake risk management programme for the years 2017 to 2020 also provides for the following seismic measures, which are described in detail in the federal government press release and will aim to:

  • ensure institutionalised cooperation at the federal level;
  • complete the renewal of national earthquake measuring systems;
  • improve the bases for hazard assessment and seismic safety requirements;
  • to inventorise the earthquake-resistance of important federal buildings in Switzerland and abroad;
  • to safeguard the quality of earthquake protection measures in construction projects involving Switzerland's Federal Building and Property Services;
  • to draft principles and criteria for the assessment and treatment of cantonal applications for special federal financial aid in the event of an earthquake;
  • to draw up a concept for the establishment and operation of a claims organisation in conjunction with insurance companies and the cantons.

In addition to devising the seismic risk model, the SED is responsible for renewing Switzerland's national seismic network.

TOPICS

Earthquake

Help, the Earth Is Shaking!

Help, the Earth Is Shaking!

Earthquakes are inevitable, but the damage they may be expected to cause can be mitigated in relatively simple ways. Find out the recommended behaviour before, during and after a powerful earthquake.

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Knowledge

Earthquake Country Switzerland

Earthquake Country Switzerland

Switzerland experiences between 500 and 800 earthquakes a year, around 10 of which are powerful enough (with a magnitude of approximately 2.5 or higher) to be felt by the country's inhabitants. Find out more about the natural hazards with the greatest damage-causing potential in Switzerland.

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Alerting

Always Informed

Always Informed

If you want to be kept informed at all times, here you will find an overview of the various information services provided by the Swiss Seismological Service (SED).

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Knowledge

Earthquake Hazard

Earthquake Hazard

In Switzerland, earthquakes are the natural hazard with the greatest potential for causing damage. They cannot currently be prevented or reliably predicted. But, thanks to extensive research, much is now known about how often and how intensely the earth could shake at a given location in the future. Consult a variety of different maps using our interactive web tool to find out how likely certain earthquakes are in Switzerland.

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Research & Teaching

Fields of Research

Fields of Research

We are often asked what staff at the SED do when no earthquakes are occurring. The answer is they conduct research in a variety of fields, constituting SED's main scientific activities described in our research field section.

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About Us

Swiss Seismological Service (SED)

Swiss Seismological Service (SED)

The Swiss Seismological Service (SED) at ETH Zurich is the federal agency responsible for monitoring earthquakes in Switzerland and its neighboring countries and for assessing Switzerland’s seismic hazard. When an earthquake happens, the SED informs the public, authorities, and the media about the earthquake’s location, magnitude, and possible consequences. The activities of the SED are integrated in the federal action plan for earthquake precaution.

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Earthquakes

Earthquake Monitoring

Earthquake Monitoring

Around 10 times a year on average you will hear or read about an earthquake occurring in Switzerland. However, the vast majority of quakes recorded by the SED go unnoticed by the general public because they fall below the threshold of human perception and can only be detected by sensitive measuring devices. The Swiss Seismological Service (SED) operates a network of more than 150 seismic stations across Switzerland.

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Research and Teaching

Products and Software

Products and Software

Go to our Products page for access to seismic data and various apps.

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