Earthquake Scenarios for the Cities of Sofia, Rousse and Vratsa

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Information & Security: An International Journal, Volume 24, p.51-64 (2009)


deterministic scenario, earthquake safety, earthquake scenario., geotechnical zonation, Historical earthquakes, seismic hazard


Global seismic hazard and vulnerability to earthquakes are increasing steadily as urbanization and development occupy more areas that are prone to ef­fects of strong earthquakes. The uncontrolled growth of mega cities in highly seis­mic areas around the world is often associated with the construction of seismically unsafe buildings and infrastructures, and undertaken with an insufficient knowledge of the regional seismicity peculiarities and seismic hazard. The assessment of seis­mic hazard and generation of earthquake scenarios is the first link in the prevention chain and the first step in the evaluation of seismic risk. The territory of Bulgaria (situated in the eastern part of the Balkan Peninsula) represents a typical example of high seismic risk area. Over the centuries, Bulgaria has experienced strong earth­quakes. The strongest earthquakes reached magnitude 7.8 in southwestern Bulgaria, magnitude 7.5 in northeastern Bulgaria, and magnitude 7.0 in southern Bulgaria. Moreover, the seismicity of the neighboring countries, like Greece, Turkey, former Yugoslavia and Romania (especially Vrancea-Romania intermediate earthquakes), influences the seismic hazard in Bulgaria. In the present study earthquake scenarios for three Bulgarian cities (Sofia, Rousse and Vratsa) are presented. The scenarios were generated using deterministic approach that was applied in the European pro­ject Risk-EU (2001-2004). Such scenarios are intended as a basic input for devel­oping detailed earthquake damage scenarios for the cities and can be used in earth­quake-safe town and infrastructure planning.