Earthquake Rattles Washington D.C. – August 23, 2011 (Updated)

A magnitude 5.9 earthquake occurred in Virginia today at 1:51 pm EDT.    The details from the USGS are below. ***Scroll to bottom for updates***

Earthquake Details

  • This event has been reviewed by a seismologist.
Magnitude 5.9
Date-Time
Location 37.975°N, 77.969°W
Depth 1 km (~0.6 mile) (poorly constrained)
Region VIRGINIA
Distances 45 km (27 miles) E of Charlottesville, Virginia
55 km (34 miles) SW of Fredericksburg, Virginia
64 km (39 miles) NW of RICHMOND, Virginia
82 km (50 miles) NNE of Farmville, Virginia
Location Uncertainty horizontal +/- 10.9 km (6.8 miles); depth +/- 7.4 km (4.6 miles)
Parameters NST=390, Nph=390, Dmin=57.9 km, Rmss=1.17 sec, Gp= 47°,
M-type=regional moment magnitude (Mw), Version=6
Source
  • Magnitude: USGS NEIC (WDCS-D)
    Location: USGS NEIC (WDCS-D)
Event ID usc0005ild

While the quake’s epicenter was approximately 83 miles SW of D.C., preliminary reports indicate that the trembler was felt  as far north as New York.  Reports also indicate that the ground was shaking in North Carolina.

From KESQ.com:

“It’s one of the largest that we’ve had there,” USGS seismologist Lucy Jones told CNN. Aftershocks were a concern, she said. “People should be expecting (them), especially over the next hour or two,” she added.She said that she would expect to see “significant damage” to old, brick buildings near the epicenter. “If you’ve already got some damage, you might want to stay outside,” she said.

UPDATE:  It is being reported that the Washington Monument has received some structural damage from the quake.  From Real Clear Politics:

“The U.S. Capitol Police reports that the Washington Monument has been damaged after a 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck near the nation’s capital.

There are also reports that the Washington Monument is “tilting” from ABC News affiliate WABC.

UPDATE:  Reports now indicate that the quake has severly damage the National Cathedral in D.C.

Broken pinnacles atop the National Cathedral

From Reuters:

The Washington National Cathedral, the highest building in the city, suffered damage in Tuesday’s earthquake, with three pinnacles in the central tower breaking off, a spokesman said.

See more from the Reuters article here:  http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/08/23/us-quake-usa-cathedral-idUSTRE77M72Q20110823

Comments

comments

2 Comments

  1. Felt it down here in NC. I was putting on my shoes and it felt like a giant grabbed both sides of the trailer and started shaking. I was slightly puzzled, but heard the news on the radio about 5 minutes later.

  2. Seems there is proof of what I’m saying @ the website when an earthquake strikes the U.S.Cathedral’s spires. It’s home of inaugurals & Presidential funerals & MLK’s dedication was rescheduled elsewhere. It’s also the tallest building in D.C. What am I saying @ the website? Check out page 5 among others @ PoliticsOfGods.com

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