August 25, 2011

The East Coast Quake

The strongest quake since 1944 hit Virginia Tuesday.

Jessica: First up today, the latest on Tuesday’s East Coast earthquake, which caused very little serious damage but sure rattled a lot of nerves — like mine! It is something we are not used to out here on the East Coast.

An estimated 12 million people from Georgia all the way up to Canada felt the  5.8 quake. Near the epicenter in Virginia, supplies in this market came flying off the shelves. Shattered windows…

“All the structural damage along here.”

Jessica: …And cracked walls need to be repaired. Many residents say the earthquake took them by surprise.

Chuck Hoffman: I had just finished teaching a third block class. As soon as the shaking and the rumbling and the noise hit, it was quite evident that we’ve got an earthquake going on here.

Jessica: In washington, D.C., schools were closed yesterday. So were several landmarks including the Lincoln Memorial, the National Cathedral and the Washington Monument, where a helicopter crew spotted a crack at the top of the 500-foot structure.

Experts say overall the U.S. has safe building regulations and that helped minimize damage. The quake also didn’t cause any major injuries but it did send some people running to the internet.

Several New Yorkers say they read tweets about the earthquake hitting D.C. nearly 30 seconds before the rumbling started in the Big Apple. Social media sites like Facebook and Twitter were buzzing with phrases like ‘D.C. quake’ and ‘felt it.’

There were also a few jokes. On the West Coast, where earthquakes are more common, one resident tweeted, “5.9? That’s what us Californians use to stir our coffee with.”

More than 18,000 people checked into the event Earthquakepocalypse on

So far, there have been at least 4 aftershocks ranging in magnitude from 2.2 to 4.2. Experts say the aftershocks could continue for several weeks but they do not think any of them will be as big as the 5.8 quake.


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