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Earthquake “shakes” New York City in one of the most significant quakes of East Coast US in the last century

Earthquake “shakes” New York City in one of the most significant quakes of East Coast US in the last century
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A New York City resident bravely shared with the media, “I was laying in my bed, and my whole apartment building started shaking.” This courageous response was echoed by more than 42 million residents of New York who experienced a significant earthquake and multiple aftershocks, which seem to have reached Baltimore and Philadelphia.

The original earthquake hit the region on Friday morning, near 10.23 am, with a magnitude of 4.8. The aftershocks experienced after it occurred in the evening by 6 pm almost 40 miles west of New York City, near Gladstone, New Jersey, and the intensity was read to be close to 3.8 magnitude. 

Several thousand video footage, mostly from household closed-circuit cameras, showed homes and buildings shaking as a result of the tremors. But no injury or damages have been reported so far, even though residents were rattled.

EarthquakeCourtesy: USGS

This is the most significant earthquake event to hit New York City since 1911, marking a rare occurrence in the region’s history!

New York Governor Kathy Hochul posted in X, telling residents that “aftershocks of these sizes are normal” and that no further damages are expected from the event. She added that damage assessment has been started across the New York and New Jersey regions.

After the actual quake on Friday morning, several other aftershocks of much lesser magnitude were felt throughout the day before the evening’s 3.8—three shocks of magnitude ranging from 1.8 to 2 were felt in different areas by noon the same day.

Hochul notes that the region hasn’t seen an earthquake of such a magnitude since a century before, back in 1911! Thus, region-wide assessment of any damages to public properties and transit infrastructures is being checked. One of the top concerns is the Hudson River tunnels built in 1911.

Emergency responses sprung into action

Emergency response teams swiftly and effectively sprung into action right after the first reports, mainly to allay the public’s fears, as such events aren’t common in these areas. Their prompt actions, including torrents of texts, calls, and inquiries, both to the administration and among family members, reassured the public and demonstrated their preparedness.

New York City Emergency Management Commissioner Zachary Iscol was seen to have said that they have activated earthquake protocols, coordinating with all city, state, federal, and other utility partners. Public notifications were sent out by wireless emergency alert systems and Notify NYC. Residents were asked to report to 311 if they noted any cracks or damages to their buildings as a result of the earthquake.

“Go about your normal day”, residents were told by Mayor

New York City Mayor Eric Adams has issued clear instructions to residents, urging them to continue with their daily routines and assuring them that first responders are already working diligently to ensure the city’s safety. However, in the event of another aftershock, the public was advised to take immediate protective measures, such as ‘dropping to the floor, covering their head and neck, and seeking cover under a solid piece of furniture next to an interior wall, or in a doorway.’

Public schools were instructed to continue their routine as usual, and parents were urged not to rush to pick up their children. 

Transit systems put on temporary halts

Even though no damages were reported from the quake, temporary stops were made at the John F. Kennedy and Newark Liberty airports. Delays occurred in La Guardia, and authorities were checking for any damages to the airport structures or the runways.

Additionally, the MTA inspects all bridges, tunnels, and even subway tunnels in the New York City area for any hazards and damages. MTA on X: “Initial inspections show there was no damage to any MTA infrastructure, but we will continue to monitor the situation closely,”

Meanwhile, the Empire State Building took it to X on a lighter note, to lighten the mood when it proclaimed it was safe on the social media platform!

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