Virginia earthquake felt in Polk

Published 9:40 am Wednesday, August 24, 2011

USGS measures quake at 5.9 magnitude
Area residents who thought they felt the ground moving underneath them yesterday afternoon, Aug. 23, were not imagining it – they were feeling an earthquake that hit central Virginia.

Right: The United States Geological Survey map with a box showing the center of the earthquake that hit central Virginia at 1:51 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 23. The quake measured at 5.9 on the Richter scale and was felt as far north as Boston and as far south as the Carolinas.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) confirmed a 5.9-magnitude quake hit central Virginia on Tuesday, Aug. 23 and was felt as far north as Canada and as far south as the Carolinas.
The quake lasted about 10 seconds in the Tryon area. Residents reported a slight shaking of houses and ripples in drinks sitting on tables.
The earthquake was centered nine miles south of Mineral, Va., which is located between Charlottesville and Richmond, and 87 miles southwest of Washington, D.C., according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
The USGS initially recorded the quake at 5.8 magnitude but later upgraded it to a 5.9. It struck at 1:51 p.m. Tuesday, the USGS said. A 2.8 magnitude aftershock was reported at 2:46 p.m. The USGS reported the quake to be 3.7 miles deep.
The quake reportedly sent hundreds of people out into the streets from the White House in Washington, D.C. Employees also fled the U.S. Capitol, and House and Senate office buildings were evacuated, as tremors shook the buildings for several seconds.
Evacuations were also reported in New York, Boston and North Carolina, according to reports.
No other information was available as of press time Tuesday.

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