HomeForeignAftermath Of Strange Earthquake That Shook New York

Aftermath Of Strange Earthquake That Shook New York

It was business as usual in Lower Manhattan after a 4.8 magnitude quake rattled the region.

On Friday morning, New Yorkers were all asking each other the same question: “Did you feel that?”

“Did you feel that?” Medhi Mammadov’s co-workers asked each other as their office on the 27th floor of the iconic Woolworth Building began to shake.

People walk around Times Square as news tickers display news about the earthquake on Friday April 5, 2024 in New York. An earthquake centered between New York and Philadelphia shook skyscrapers and suburbs across the northeastern U.S. for several seconds Friday morning, causing no major damage but startling millions of people in an area unaccustomed to such tremors. (AP Photo/Brittainy Newman)

“Did you feel that?” Julie Hendricks-Atkins’ colleagues chirped from their cubicles in Lower Manhattan.

“DID ANYONE FEEL THAT?” a resident of the Greenpoint neighbourhood in Brooklyn exclaimed as he burst out of his brownstone.

“What’s going on!” A woman across the street shouted back.

“There was an earthquake!” he declared.

The Brooklynite’s assessment was correct: at 10:23 local time, New York City and other parts of the north-east had experienced a mild 4.8 magnitude earthquake, originating near Lebanon, New Jersey.

The tremor was strong enough to be felt, but not powerful enough to cause serious harm.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul reported “no life-threatening situations,” and damage appeared relatively minimal – a few cracks in the sidewalk in New Jersey, and some items that fell of shelves and smashed.

A residential block in Newark, New Jersey evacuated homes that sustained structural damage, but there were no injuries reported.

Some people were understandably jolted by the quake. New Yorkers said they could feel their buildings shake, perhaps not the most pleasant experience if you’re perched in one of the city’s many skyscrapers.

“It was really freaky,” Danielle Guida, who was at a gym in Midtown Manhattan, told the BBC. “People were definitely scared.”

Razia Sultana, a city employee, said she and her colleagues grabbed their coats and were prepared to evacuate before the rumbling stopped.

But it takes quite a lot to rattle New Yorkers, and for many of them, not even an earthquake was enough. What was one more disturbance in a city that operates in a constant state of controlled chaos? The merciful lack of damage gave them free range to make light of the quake, or ignore it altogether.

Ms Hendricks-Atkins said that at first she mistook the shaking for the constant thrum of construction taking place outside her office.

“I didn’t believe that it’s an earthquake, because I wasn’t expecting an earthquake in New York!” Mr Mammadov said as he took an unflustered stroll past City Hall.

The BBC asked a New York City schoolteacher, who did not want to be named, how her young class reacted to the quake.

“They thought it was a ghost,” she texted back.

By lunchtime, New Yorkers seemed to forget about it. Riders on the subway completely ignored the shrill chime of the emergency alerts that authorities pushed to their cell phones.

Officials have warned New Yorkers to be mindful of aftershocks, which are common following an initial earthquake. When they did rumble in, most people were nonchalant.

A trio of subway workers shared a laugh deep under Brooklyn, with two conductors shouting across the platform at each other that they had felt “nothin.”

Charles Walter, the third employee, joked that he thought the earthquake was his stomach rumbling.

X, formerly known as Twitter, was, predictably, a scene.

“I AM FINE” the Empire State Building declared, shortly after the rattling subsided.

“Earthquake, or vibe shift?” one New York Times reporter inquired.

The posts were not all fun and games, though.

In an ominous message, conservative congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia warned that, “God is sending America strong signs to tell us to repent. Earthquakes and eclipses and many more things to come.”

She did not specify what exactly America did wrong.

Back on the picturesque block in Greenpoint, the Brooklyn resident continued to ask each of his neighbours, who had all poked their heads out of their brownstones like a pack of urban meerkats, if they had felt the quake.

The man then turned to the BBC and asked if I had felt the jolt.

Your correspondent, who was standing on the pavement during the memorable event, had felt nothing.

BBC

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