Yesterday – believe it or not, the earth moved in Northern Virginia.
We had a mini earthquake in Virginia and the event even has a name. It is “The North Springfield/Ravensworth/Annandale Earthquake” of May 2008. The epicenter of the quake was at one of the warehouses on Port Royal Road in Springfield, Virginia: 38.806° NO, 77.220° WE.
I was digging in my garden along the side of the house when there was a sudden muffled boom that shook our dwelling place. Captain Cliff came running from his downstairs office looking for a fallen tree that he expected had crashed upon our roof. That was his first reaction. To me it felt like the earthquakes I remembered from our days living in California. That mention by me of an earthquake in Virginia caused the good Captain to immediately guffaw the idea. Our next door neighbor, Mary Elizabeth, came running out of her house, so we knew it was not only our home affected.
The USGS Earthquake Center on the Internet first listed it as a 1.8 Magnitude “micro quake” that occurred at 1:30 pm with an epicenter in Annandale, south of NOVA Community College, off of Route 236/Wakefield Chapel Road, and west of Interstate 495.
By evening, the USGS had slightly updated the epicenter and magnitude, based upon more data they had gathered. The newly identified epicenter is now located between Port Royal Road and Queensberry, just to the west of the Port Royal Road warehouses and businesses.
You can learn more about our rare earthquake by going to this USGS site:
If it had not been an earthquake, I felt it could have been caused by some sort of detonation at the Army’s nearby Fort Belvoir. Apparently the Army has reported to the news media that there had been no explosions or detonations at Fort Belvoir on that day.
So … we probably had a “real” earthquake, something of a rarity around here, but never an impossibility. Considering that our earthly abode rests upon the crusty surface of a swirling sphere of molten rock, we are lucky to have the peace and calm that we usually enjoy. Virginia Quakes