New Jersey struck by 3.1 magnitude earthquake in rare event

A magnitude 3.1 earthquake struck East Freehold, New Jersey, early Wednesday – rousing residents who took to social media to express their alarm at the rare event, according to a report.

The temblor shook up the area a little more than a mile southeast of the community just after 2 a.m., the US Geological Survey said on its Earthquake Hazards Program website, NJ.com reported.

The National Weather Service’s Mount Holly office said on Twitter that the quake was felt “in much of central New Jersey.”

New Yorkers in Queens and on Staten Island also reported feeling the ground shake, according to NJ.com.

“It sounded like a dump truck being dropped from a few stories up, but about 4-5 blocks away,” a Matawan, New Jersey, resident said on a temblor-tracking website run by the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre in Paris.

“It rumbled the floor for about 5 seconds. I could feel from my feet on the floor and through the seat of the chair,” the resident added.

The EMSC uses an app called LastQuake to gather witness reports.

“Whole house shook for several seconds at 2 a.m.,” an East Brunswick resident said, NJ.com reported. “Initially thought it may have been a low flying aircraft or helicopter, but none in the area.”

Another resident wrote: “Everyone woke up including the dog. I thought a car hit the garage.”

On Aug. 23, 2011, a 5.8 magnitude earthquake in Virginia shook buildings in New Jersey.

No major damage was reported in the Garden State at that time, but some buildings were evacuated.

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