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Posted on Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 2:40 p.m.

U.S. Geological Survey confirms earthquake in Canada, felt here in Ann Arbor

By Amalie Nash

Did you feel the ground move in Ann Arbor just before 2 p.m.?

A 5.0-magnitude earthquake has been confirmed at 1:41 p.m., with the epicenter 40 miles north of Ottawa on the border of Quebec and Ontario, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

An aftershock occurred about 10 minutes later, said Don Blakeman, a geophysicist with the National Earthquake Information Center. The quake was felt throughout New England and Pennsylvania; no injuries have been reported, he said.

The earthquake rattled buildings from Windsor to Montreal and several U.S. states, the Globe and Mail in Canada reported. The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake occurred at a depth of 9.8 miles.

It was also felt here in Ann Arbor. Many local residents - especially those on upper floors of higher buildings - say they felt the ground shake for about 30 seconds.


The U.S. Geological Survey website shows the earthquake.

“What we felt is just the seismic waves from that event,” said Amy Bengtson, a post-doctorate fellow at the University of Michigan’s Geological Physics department. “It was large enough that we would expect to feel it here.”

Bengtson said the energy released from the earthquake was about 1,000 times smaller than the one that devastated Haiti earlier this year.

"We would not expect any damage here" in Ann Arbor," she said.

Ann Arbor police said they haven't received any reports of damage in the city.

Michigan State University's College of Wooster Seismograph Station registered a rumble at 1:50 p.m., according to an official at the state of Michigan's Office of Geological Survey.

Workers on the sixth floor of Ann Arbor's city hall said items on top their desks started shaking and copy machines started rattling. At first, they dismissed it as normal disruption from the police-courts building construction going on next door, but quickly realized it was more than that.

City Planner Matt Kowalski said he felt an earthquake without question.

"You could actually see my water on my desk shake," he said. "I've been around before when they've had a couple other earthquakes in Michigan. This one, though, it was long enough to where I stood up and actually still felt the ground swaying. You could feel the building swaying."

Steve Bostedor, 37, said he felt the ground move at his Dexter Township office.

“I was sitting here and the building we are in has a kind-of suspended floor and I thought it was someone walking by us at first,” Bostedor said. “It felt like a gentle rocking back and forth.

“So I picked my feet up off the floor and my chair was rocking, too. I looked out the window and we have a metal pole and that was rocking back and forth. And I thought that was weird.”

Bostedor estimated he felt the shaking for about a minute.

Workers at digital marketing firm Pure Visibility on the fifth floor of Ann Arbor’s 10-story 1920s era First National Building felt the building gently shaking.

“The floor was moving my leg as I sat cross-legged in my desk chair,” Pure Visibility’s Dunrie Greiling said in an e-mail. “The folks around me started talking about how there was supposed to be crazy wind-weather, but it didn't feel like wind (and the windows weren't making any wind noises). It lasted what seemed to be a long time, but may have been 10 seconds or so?”

The National Weather Service in White Lake Township - already busy with thunderstorm activity - also received multiple calls about the earthquake, said meteorologist Danny Costello.

"I didn't feel it - I missed out," he said.

As for those severe storms, a second round is still expected later this evening - but may not be as bad as originally expected. The earlier storm system was weaker than first predicted.

The National Weather Service said at 3 p.m. that the storms will be possible south of M-59 between 5 p.m. and 11 p.m.

The last time an earthquake was felt in Ann Arbor was on April 18, 2008. That quake was centered 6 miles of West Salem, Ill., and was felt in Chicago, Cincinnati and Milwaukee. It did not result in significant damage or injuries.'s Stefanie Murray, Lee Higgins, Ryan Stanton and Nathan Bomey contributed to this report.

Did you feel it? Where were you?



Mon, Jun 28, 2010 : 1:11 p.m.

I felt it while I was watching tv and I am in Saratoga Springs, NY. I humorously thought, Oh, it's an earthquake. Then came to find out that it was:P


Thu, Jun 24, 2010 : 1:07 p.m.

Here at home in A2, nothing... hmmm. My husband at work in Farmington Hills called to tell me, then my Mom in Chelsea called that she felt it too. They both were in buildings and at about 5 floors up.


Thu, Jun 24, 2010 : 6:45 a.m.

I live near Saline. I was napping in a chair when I awoke to the feeling of my dog leaning against the lazyboy scratching, making the chair wobble. I looked, and no dog! Then I noticed all the hanging lights swinging! Never felt one before...


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 9:57 p.m.

I knew it! I was at home in Chelsea, sitting at my dining room table. I felt this strange rumble in the chair for maybe 15 seconds or so. I even glanced at the clock (it was 1:45 pm) just in case I needed a reference point. I forgot all about it until watching the severe weather reports on TV tonight and it was mentioned then.

James Wallace

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 6:57 p.m.

I was able to feel it in Queensbury NY

Tom Perkins

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 5:57 p.m.

I was on the tennis court. Figured it was just my serve.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 4:01 p.m.

We felt it on the 5th floor of 201 S. Division St, but the people on the 3rd floor didn't feel anything!


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 3:59 p.m.

just wait until the next big quake hits the new madrid fault line, we'll feel that one for sure!


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 3:54 p.m.

I felt it to...I was In a meeting on the third floor with eleven other people. All twelve us agreed right away that we were experiencing an earthquake.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 3:39 p.m.

Felt it on the 3rd floor in an office building at N. Ashley and felt like the floor was rolling, not so much quaking/shaking.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 3:15 p.m.

My co-worker thought I was crazy! Then someone came in and asked if we felt the earthquake. Definitely did in Chelsea - prof bldg 3rd floor.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 3:01 p.m.

Did *not* feel it in the underground Law Library, though people above ground at the Law School apparently did feel it.

Atticus F.

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 2:42 p.m.

On a side note, I heard that the oil plumes being seen in the ocean are coming from cracks in the earths surface. And that the ocean floor is getting ready collapse, releasing enough oil to destroy the world!

Atticus F.

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 2:37 p.m.

I was sitting at my desk writing an email at at 1:43...Did not feel a thing. Main and Liberty area, ground level.

Linda Dufek

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 2:29 p.m.

Felt it in Chelsea. Ground level in my office. For about 30 seconds. And my husband felt it on the second floor of our home. A door was banging against a doorstop for about 30 seconds for no apparent reason.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 2:23 p.m.

felt it here in milan


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 2:11 p.m.

Felt it in Dexter


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 2:06 p.m.

My son felt it in North Ann Arbor

Ryan J. Stanton

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:53 p.m.

Observation from @trevorstaples on Twitter: "Jesus struck by lightening, USA advances, earthquake in Michigan... End of days?"


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:47 p.m.

Felt it here in Whitmore Lake while working in my second floor office. Rocked back and forth for a good 5-10 seconds. Waiting for the mudslides and forest fires to start any second.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:40 p.m.

Felt it in Milwaukee, WI. Desk shook at our office building.

Siobhan Kilgallen

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:37 p.m.

I have experience with earthquakes as I grew up in LA. I didn't feel this one in Saline.

Rork Kuick

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:34 p.m.

Pretty easy to feel on 9th floor 300 N Ingalls. Being in a taller building might help. Was trying to figure it out using the "Saint Louis University Broadband Seismic Station Information" cause it was so slow to be reported. The traces from some stations were pretty cool looking.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:34 p.m.

Seems like the only way to have felt it in the Michigan area was to be a few stories up in a building. Most people in houses didn't feel it.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:33 p.m.

Definitely felt it on the 3rd floor of the Porter building at EMU! I was the only one that felt it and thought I was going crazy.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:30 p.m.

We felt it in downtown Jackson.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:26 p.m.

On the ground floor of a building in A2 near Washtenaw & Huron and I didn't feel anything. I'm quite upset about it too. >:[


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:24 p.m.

We're as hip as California now! Assuming no damage or injuries, it was neat to feel the intensity of it increaing. But by the time I thought to go to a doorway or outside, it was over.

David Jesse

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:22 p.m.

Nothing here in Ypsi Twp.

Mrs. Devine

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:18 p.m.

Totally felt it! 3rd floor at University Health Service (UHS) on central campus.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:15 p.m.

Everyone in my 3rd floor office on UM central campus felt it. Created quite a stir.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:12 p.m.

We felt it all the way out in Saratoga Springs, NY.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:10 p.m.

I felt it too on the second floor of LSA Building in Ann Arbor.


Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:09 p.m.

My mom felt it on Portage Lake, thought she was going crazy.

Drew Montag

Wed, Jun 23, 2010 : 1:07 p.m.

We felt it on the 4th floor of the old Argus Building (Fourth Street and William) in Ann Arbor. Just some mild swaying for about 30 seconds.