Maine Residents Shaken by Rare Quake

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It's rare for earthquakes to shake the East Coast, but that's exactly what happened in Maine last night. A magnitude 4.0 quake struck near Portland around 7 p.m. and was felt throughout New England.

"So I figured maybe it was just me," one New England resident said.  "You're telling me it's not just me."

A seismograph reading showing the 4.0 magnitude earthquake that hit southern Maine is proof it wasn't just him. The U.S. Geological Survey says the epicenter was about 3 miles west of Hollis Center, Maine, about 3 miles deep. That's about 20 miles west of Portland.

"My bed was shaking back and forth, and I wasn't quite sure what it was," one woman said. 

"Yeah, honestly, I just thought they were doing construction across the street," another man said.

"(A) 4.0 means that this is the largest earthquake since 2006 when we had a 4.2 centered at Bar Harbor, Maine," Dr. John Ebel, director of the Weston Observatory at Boston College, said.

"And I was working, and I felt dizzy, and I thought, 'Aghhh,'" another woman exclaimed.

"It vibrated my couch, like behind me, so it felt like something was behind my couch," yet another said.

Residents in Vermont, New Hampshire, eastern Massachusetts, and as far south as Rhode Island and Connecticut felt the earthquake.

There are no reports of aftershocks, serious damage or injuries.

"In the eastern United States, earthquakes are felt over a much bigger area than they are in the western United States out in California because the crust is different, the crust is colder, the crust is thinner," explained Frank Revetta, a geologist at SUNY-Potsdam.

"So when earthquakes occur, the effects are transmitted much greater distances," he said.

Residents in New England got a head start on a worldwide earthquake drill this week. On Thursday, more than 14 million people around the globe will participate in the Great ShakeOut drill which helps folks practice on how to be safe during earthquakes.

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Mark Martin is a reporter and anchor at CBN News, covering various issues from military matters to alternative fuels. Mark has reported internationally in the Middle East and traveled to Bahrain to cover stories on the U.S.S. Dwight D. Eisenhower. Follow Mark on Twitter @MarkMartinCBN and "like" him at Facebook.com/MarkMartinCBN.