A rare earthquake centered in Virginia rattled parts of New Jersey and New York shortly before 2 p.m., causing buildings to sway in cities and towns across the region.
There were no immediate reports of any injuries or structural damage, but the quake rattled nerves.
The U.S. Geological Survey is reporting that a magnitude 5.9 earthquake hit at 1:51 p.m., EST. The epicenter was northwest of Richmond, Va., about halfway to Charlottesville. The Associated Press is reporting the quake was felt in Washington, D.C., New York City and North Carolina.
USGS Geophysicist Julie Dutton said an earthquake of this magnitude is rare for the East Coast but that the effects are felt widely in our region because quakes move more easily through the bedrock.
“It is definitely unusual to have a magnitude 5.9 earthquake in Virginia,” Dutton said.
The East Coast Earthquake in Virginia was felt for hundreds of miles, and on the Wildwood Boardwalk, Bob Ingram and I were eating lunch about 1:45 when all of a sudden the chair’s we were sitting on were swaying back and forth as the Wildwood Boardwalk was shifting from the ocean to the bay, then I said “do you feel that? the boardwalk is moving?” and a person sitting next to us said “that was just and earthquake” then he took out his smartphone and started tweeting and I though, I guess he is right because I never felt and earthquake before.
The quake in Virginia may be the largest ever recorded in that area.
Many scientists who study earthquakes say the New York City / East Coast area is overdue for a moderate earthquake that will damage buildings.