Archive for August, 2011

East Coast Earthquake Rattles Washington, DC

August 23rd, 2011 -- Posted in Earthquakes | No Comments »

A 5.9 magnitude earthquake struck Virginia at 1:51 pm EDT. The quake was centered near Mineral, Virginia, northwest of Richmond and located about 87 miles from Washington, D.C. The tremor rattled the nation’s capital, causing the evacuation of the White House, Pentagon, Capitol, and other government buildings. Shaking was also felt by residents in Chapel Hill, North Carolina; Hartford, Connecticut; and as far as New York. The FAA has grounded flights in Washington DC, Philadelphia, and New York airports.

According to the WFSB news in Hartford, Connecticut, witnesses in New Haven said lights and props inside Long Wharf Theatre began to sway, and a witness in South Windsor said blinds shook as she watched television inside her home. Several businesses in the state were evacuated after the earthquake. Reports of possible damage to buildings in Virginia are coming in and reports of damage to the National Cathedral are confirmed.

A 12:15 tweet from Denise Addis, Morristown Patch’s “Around the Loop” columnist, “It was bad here on South Street; my building evacuated in like 10 seconds, everyone went running.”

According to the U.S. G.S. the quake occurred half a mile deep. A. U.S.G.S. earthquake hazard map shows Washington, DC and Virginia are not high danger zones for earthquakes.