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Posted at 06:54 AM ET, 08/25/2011

4.5-magnitude aftershock rattles area


The epicenter of the aftershock. (Courtesy of the U.S. Geological Survey)
A 4.5-magnitude aftershock overnight jolted some people awake, rattled furniture and disturbed pets across the D.C. area.

The temblor, which struck at 1:07 a.m., was centered 31 miles east of Charlottesville, Va., near the epicenter of Tuesday’s 5.8-magnitude earthquake, the U.S. Geological Survey reported.

The USGS received more than 6,800 reports from people who felt the quake, said Amy Vaughan, a geophysicist at the agency’s National Earthquake Information Center. Most came from Virginia, but reports of tremors also came from D.C., Maryland and as far away as Pennsylvania and New York. It is the fifth — and largest — aftershock since Tuesday’s quake.

“For days or weeks, we could expect aftershocks like this,” Vaughan said.

There were no initial reports of damage, but lots of accounts of frayed nerves.

Definitely felt that here in Old Town Alexandria,” Kenneth P. James wrote on the Capital Weather Gang’s Facebook page. “House shook, creaked and hanging items started swinging back and forth.”

Linda Figley, who lives in Annandale, e-mailed a Post reporter about her experience.

“Up late working and hear a rumble and the house shake. I am thinking, ‘Drat, the gas trucks from the tank farm are using Hummer Road again.’ Figley wrote. “The grumble gets louder and my desk is rocking.... The dog starts to bark and growl at the noise outside.”

Marion Robertson, of Springfield, Va., was in his kitchen getting a glass of iced tea when the aftershock struck.

First I felt like perhaps someone was outside of kitchen window.... That scared me to begin with,” he wrote in a Facebook posting. “Then a weird noise, not as loud as [Tuesday’s quake] here, but definitely caught my attention.”

More coverage:

Quake aftermath: What’s open, what’s closed

More cracks revealed at Washington Monument

Zoo mystery: How did animals know quake was coming?

Video: Engineer says Cathedral will be as good as new

Did you feel the aftershock? Have any damage at your house? Describe your experience in the comments or tell us on Twitter using #Aftershock.

By  |  06:54 AM ET, 08/25/2011

 
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