It’s been a wild week in North Jersey news — first, Montclair and other North Jersey towns made Travel + Leisure’s list of best small towns in NJ. Next, 100 dead vultures turned up on a trail in Sussex County. Now, a small 2.3 magnitude earthquake rattled Morris County yesterday and could even be felt as far as Warren and Passaic Counties. The quake was located just under 3 miles away from Morris Plains and hit at 5:14PM on Tuesday, August 30th, per USGS. NBC New York reported that the quake lasted about 30 seconds and was located about 3 miles underground. This event was likely related to the Ramapo Fault Line, which is considered an active fault line and runs through Morristown. Just after the earthquake, a small aftershock (1.7 magnitude) was reported in nearby Lake Telemark, per Patch.
(Photo credits: Earthquake Track)
The above screenshot from Earthquake Track shows other recent earthquakes in the area. The yellow and orange pin mark both the earthquake and subsequent aftershock yesterday. The memorable 3.1 magnitude earthquake that hit Freehold, NJ in September of 2020 is the blue pin.
There was no damage reported after yesterday’s quake — though many residents in the North Jersey area felt it. Thomas Pratt, a USGS geophysicist, commented that smaller eastern US earthquakes can “often sound like sonic booms or cannon shots. They have a lot of high frequencies that can really cause things to rattle,” per Northjersey.com.
— Dave Curren (@DaveCurren) August 30, 2022
(Photo credits: @davecurren)
Some users took to Twitter to say they mistook the loud jolt for thunder, while others feared the loud bang was a bomb.
“These sorts of small earthquakes happen pretty regularly in the eastern U.S. We’ll just have to wait to see if any more happen,” Thomas Pratt added.