Updated 08/23/2011 11:55 PM
City Officials Relieved At Lack Of Damage From Quake
While Tuesday's earthquake was felt in New York City, elected officials were grateful that the city's resident and buildings were spared. NY1's Grace Rauh filed the following report.
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Tuesday's earthquake with a magnitude of 5.8 was centered in northern Virginia but it shook the five boroughs, giving many people a serious scare.
There were no reports of major damage and no reported injuries in the city, and elected officials moved quickly to try and calm down anyone who was worried.
The quake even rousted Mayor Michael Bloomberg from City Hall. He was sitting at his desk when the shaking began.
"I remember my right elbow was leaning against something and there was a vibration, and the vibration kept getting bigger," said Bloomberg. "And people started to say, 'Hey, what's going on?'"
The city issued an alert about the quake, but it came out more than 30 minutes after it hit, and 911 lines were flooded with 6,000 more calls than usual.
Luckily, there were no reports of major damage or reports of injuries from the tremors.
The subways and airports were operating normally. The city's major bridges were being inspected, but officials found no sign of any damage.
"I do understand for many people this was a stressful afternoon. But so far we have been lucky to avoid any major harm," said Bloomberg.
Governor Andrew Cuomo is on vacation this week, and he held a conference call with reporters to discuss the shake-up.
“I am on Long Island but I didn’t feel anything," said Cuomo. "People who were with me said they felt it."
The fact that the quake hit on a sunny afternoon may have helped calm New Yorkers' fears.
"New Yorkers pull together when they are on the street," said Bloomberg.
Unlike some New Yorkers, the mayor said he did not suspect terrorism when the earth first began to quake. He said he first thought construction at City Hall might have been responsible for the shaking.
"Terrorism does not start with a small vibration and then peter out, unfortunately. I wish it did," said Bloomberg.
At this point, the mayor said he is busy trying to prepare for the next natural challenge on the horizon. A hurricane may hit the city this weekend and City Hall officials said that is where their focus is now.