5.9-magnitude Earthquake hits the East Coast


By Joanna Akinlosotu, News Editor

“Umm…is there a fight happening?”
“What’s going on?”
“Oh my God…”
These exclamations were followed by yells and screams as the rumbling underneath students’
feet changed into a strong, unsteady rocking. Students and employees were promptly evacuated
via intercom from the CHFHS building. Students and staff were prompted to stand a safe
distance from the building. Soon after, police could be seen arriving at the school. There was
heavy traffic flowing from St. Joseph Community Fire/EMS Station 806, the fire station located
across from CHFHS.
The U.S. Geological Survey reported that the magnitude 5.8 earthquake, centered in Virginia,
struck the East Coast at approximately 1:50 pm. The focus of the quake was 37 miles northwest
of Richmond, Virginia in Mineral, VA. Tremors were reported as far as New York, Massachusetts, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, and Ontario, Canada.
Several D.C. buildings and offices were evacuated, including the White House, the Pentagon,
and the Capitol building. According to CNN, many people in these government buildings
initially believed they were experiencing a terrorist attack. Airplane flights were immediately
delayed. All national monuments and parks in Washington were declared “stable but closed”.
Prince George’s County Public Schools were placed in evacuation mode as a safety precaution. Schools were still dismissed on time.
Residents in the DMV area are advised to expect aftershocks in the next few hours. The
following tips should be followed during an earthquake:
-Stay calm
-Stand in a doorway or crawl under heavy furniture, such as a sturdy table
-If you’re outdoors, stay in the open, away from power lines or anything that might fall
-Stay away from windows and outside doors
-Most importantly, if you’re indoors, stay inside. If you’re outside, stay outside