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US: Earthquake rattles parts of Northeast

April 5, 2024
Photo: CNN via CNN Newsource

(CNN) — An earthquake rattled buildings across parts of the Northeast Friday morning, according to data from the US Geological Survey, with reports of shaking being felt from Washington, DC to New York City to New England.

The New York Police Department said there were no damages or injuries reported.

The New York City Fire Department said the quake hit about 10:30 a.m., with the department receiving reports of shaking buildings.

“We are responding to calls and evaluating structural stability,” the department said in a statement. “There are no major incidents at this time.”

In some parts of New York City, startled residents of tenements and row houses spilled out onto the sidewalks in front of their buildings in the minutes after the shaking stopped.

“Everything started vibrating then I felt the building shake,” said David Rodriguez, a resident of Hoboken, New Jersey. “I thought it was a large truck outside until everything started swaying. But it had that sound of something swaying from side to side.”

The X account for the Empire State Building posted: “I AM FINE.”

Long after the quake subsided, residents were startled anew by loud emergency alerts on their mobile phones.

The light shaking would be unlikely to cause damage, per initial data indications from the USGS. Initial reports indicated a 4.8 magnitude quake, but that was revised to 4.7 before being adjusted back to 4.8. This could change again as more data is reviewed.

The epicenter was just northeast of Lebanon, New Jersey, less than 50 miles west of New York City, according to the USGS.

The light quake was shallow, just below the surface at 5 km depth, which made it easier for residents in affected areas to feel the shaking. Initial reports indicate shaking was widely felt in New York City, Philadelphia and Washington, DC.

Flights to the New York Kennedy, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Newark airports are being held, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

The air traffic control tower at Newark Liberty airport is being evacuated, a controller said in a radio transmission after the earthquake, meaning flights were being held while controllers moved to an alternate location.

”Nobody’s going to go anywhere for the time being,” a controller said over the radio frequency.

The runways were in the process of being inspected for damage. Shortly after the earthquake, controllers at LaGuardia were still clearing flights for departure there.

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