Nowadays several scientific disciplines utilize Citizen Science (CitSci) as a research approach. Natural hazard research and disaster management also benefit from CitSci since people can provide geodata and the relevant attributes using their mobile devices easily and rapidly during or after an event. An earthquake, depending on its intensity, is among the highly destructive natural hazards. Coordination efforts after a severe earthquake event are vital to minimize its harmful effects and timely in-situ data are crucial for this purpose. The aim of this study is to perform a CitSci pilot study to demonstrate the usability of data obtained by volunteers (citizens) for creating earthquake iso-intensity maps in a short time. The data were collected after a 5.8 Mw Istanbul earthquake which occurred on 26 September 2019. Through the mobile app “I felt the quake”, citizen observations regarding the earthquake intensity were collected from various locations. The intensity values in the app represent a revised form of the Mercalli intensity scale. The iso-intensity map was generated using a spatial kriging algorithm and compared with the one produced by The Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD), Turkey, empirically. The results show that collecting the intensity information via trained users is a plausible method for producing such maps.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited