Evidence of prehistoric liquefaction in Kuwait and implications for the seismic vulnerability of the Arabian Gulf Countries

Firyal Bou-Rabee, Yin Lu Young, Emile A. Okal*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This paper presents and analyzes paleo-liquefaction features found in the State of Kuwait. The features are cemented sand and gravel-filled dikes of Pleisto–Holocene age with appearance and composition similar to typical “sandstone pipes.” The significant age difference between the cemented dikes and the surrounding loose sand, the size and spatial distribution of the dikes, and the local geologic and hydrologic setting all suggest that the feature probably results from a single large event of seismic origin. Likely hypotheses include shaking during large earthquakes or seiching of tsunami-like waves. Additional research is needed to identify the exact cause of these dike formations, which is important for the purpose of improving seismic risk and vulnerability assessment of the Arabian Gulf countries. The search may also help explain the disappearance of an ancient civilization that lived in the same region approximately seven thousand years ago.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)799-813
Number of pages15
JournalNatural Hazards
Volume103
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2020

Keywords

  • Kuwait
  • Liquefaction
  • Seismic risk

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)

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