Seismic wave triggering of nonvolcanic tremor, episodic tremor and slip, and earthquakes on Vancouver Island
Article first published online: 19 FEB 2009
Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.
Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth (1978–2012)
Volume 114, Issue B2, February 2009
How to Cite
2009), Seismic wave triggering of nonvolcanic tremor, episodic tremor and slip, and earthquakes on Vancouver Island, J. Geophys. Res., 114, B00A01, doi:10.1029/2008JB005875., , , , , , and (
- Issue published online: 19 FEB 2009
- Article first published online: 19 FEB 2009
- Manuscript Accepted: 20 NOV 2008
- Manuscript Revised: 14 OCT 2008
- Manuscript Received: 16 JUN 2008
 We explore the physical conditions that enable triggering of nonvolcanic tremor and earthquakes by considering local seismic activity on Vancouver Island, British Columbia during and immediately after the arrival of large-amplitude seismic waves from 30 teleseismic and 17 regional or local earthquakes. We identify tremor triggered by four of the teleseismic earthquakes. The close temporal and spatial proximity of triggered tremor to ambient tremor and aseismic slip indicates that when a fault is close to or undergoing failure, it is particularly susceptible to triggering of further events. The amplitude of the triggering waves also influences the likelihood of triggering both tremor and earthquakes such that large amplitude waves triggered tremor in the absence of detectable aseismic slip or ambient tremor. Tremor and energy radiated from regional/local earthquakes share the same frequency passband so that tremor cannot be identified during these smaller, more frequent events. We confidently identify triggered local earthquakes following only one teleseism, that with the largest amplitude, and four regional or local events that generated vigorous aftershock sequences in their immediate vicinity. Earthquakes tend to be triggered in regions different from tremor and with high ambient seismicity rates. We also note an interesting possible correlation between large teleseismic events and episodic tremor and slip (ETS) episodes, whereby ETS events that are “late” and have built up more stress than normal are susceptible to triggering by the slight nudge of the shaking from a large, distant event, while ETS events that are “early” or “on time” are not.