BLISS CORNER, Mass. (NewsNation Now) — The strongest earthquake to hit southern New England in decades rattled homes and nerves Sunday morning, but didn’t cause any significant damage, authorities said.
The 3.6 magnitude earthquake rattled centered off the coast of New Bedford, Massachusetts, in Buzzards Bay struck just after 9 a.m., according to the USGS. The USGS originally said it was a 4.0 magnitude in the preliminary reading.
It was the strongest earthquake in the area since a magnitude 3.5 temblor hit in March 1976, said Paul Caruso, a USGS geophysicist.
About 14,000 people went to the agency’s website to report the earthquake, including people from Easthampton, Massachusetts, and Hartford, Connecticut, both about 100 miles (160 kilometers) away, and several from more than 50 miles (80 kilometers) away in Boston, he said.
That’s not unusual in New England.
“It’s common for them to be felt very far away because the rock here is old and continuous and transmits the energy a long way,” Caruso said.
Ali Kenner Brodsky, who lives in Dartmouth, Massachusetts, not far from the epicenter, was sitting in her kitchen talking with her son, when it hit.
“It was a rumbling. It sounded like something exploded. It rumbled. The whole house shook,” she said.
She said it lasted around 10 to 15 seconds. “In that moment, it feels like it’s going on forever.”
Her husband, Sam, ran to the basement because he thought the boiler blew up.
Magnitude 3.6 earthquakes rarely cause major damage, Caruso said.
Chris Besse, a spokesman for the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, said it had not received any reports of significant damage.
There were some reports of minor damage.
The earthquake struck at a depth of a little more than 15 kilometers (9.3 miles).
This story is developing. Refresh for updates.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.