Lori's AM Buzz: The day the earth moved
Some of you may not have needed an alarm clock to get you out of bed Friday morning.
Earthquake! Yes, Virginia (and D.C. and Maryland) that WAS an earthquake this morning around 5 a.m. The U.S.Geological Survey says the 3.6-magnitude quake was centered in Gaithersburg, (though some on Twitter say the epicenter was more likely Germantown.) Either way, Montgomery County officials said their switchboards were flooded with calls from anxious residents. There have been no reports of damage so far.
Other quake factoids: this is the largest quake recorded within 45 miles miles of D.C. since 1974, when a comprehensive database was created to track such seismic activity. Prior to this quake, the largest quake to shake the area in the last 35 years was a 2.7 temblor in 1993. The depth of Friday's quake's was about 3.1 miles. Its epicenter was near the intersection of I-270 and Route 119. A short video clip of a sound check from the studio of Fox 5 shows the moment when the quake hit this morning at around 5:05 a.m.
Dean Miletich, of Frederick. Md. told The Post's Jonathan Forsythe: "I was taking out the trash right around 5 a.m. And when I came back into the garage, everything on the shelves were shaking, especially a step ladder that rattled against the side wall. It sounded like a deep rumble. When I came back inside, my wife had woken up and asked me, 'What did you do?'. It seemed to last 10-15 seconds."
I'm a native Californian, so it's been awhile since I've been shaken awake by a quake, but I remember feeling some doozies, including one that rattled me out of bed when I was housesitting a friend's house in the Santa Cruz Mountains many years ago. Now THAT was a quake I won't forget.
Well, that's one way to start a Friday morning -- with a jolt (sorry, couldn't resist and you have to admit the opportunities to use earthquake-related humor are pretty rare in these parts.) We'll follow this story and bring you updates as the day continues. Remember: if you've got a story you want to share, post a comment below or email me firstname.lastname@example.org. Have questions about the quake? We'll have a live chat with a USGS expert today at 11 a.m.
Other things on the agenda:
Apple and the iPhone4. Apple will hold a news conference today at 1 p.m. Eastern Timeto discuss growing concerns about antenna problems with the iPhone4. Some are saying the Cupertino-based company needs to issue a recall of the device. On Thursday, stories began circulating on the Web that said Jobs was told about the antenna problem prior to the iPhone's June 24 debut. Apple said at least one of the stories is "simply not true." Guess we'll hear more in a few hours. We'll bring you updates from the news conference.
Lost ticket revenue. Fairfax County has been missing out on tens of thousands of dollars in speeding ticket revenue because of a little-understood legal error that sent some fines to state coffers instead of county ones. County officials, understandably, are working to remedy the problem.
Drug bust in D.C. Big drug bust in the District Thursday. Authorities seized more than $200,000 in narcotics in a city-wide operation that involved more than 200 police and drug enforcement officers.
The cupcake as reality TV star? Friday night is the premier of "DC Cupcakes", featuring the team behind the uber-successful Georgetown Cupcake shop. In honor of the premier, Georgetown Cupcake will be giving out one free cupcake per person.
@gtowncupcake: FRI JULY 16th - We'll be giving out special "DC Cupcakes" to celebrate the premiere, all DAY LONG! One FREE cupcake/person until closing!
The Post's Hank Stuever offers his thoughts on "DC Cupcakes", the latest entry into reality television universe.
1-2-3 . . . The National Aquarium's Water Log blog reminds us that today is the annual dolphin count in Ocean City. Folks from the National Aquarium’s Marine Animal Rescue Program will be stationed along the beach at 40th and 130th streets. Another team will be on a Coast Guard boat in the waters off Ocean City and at Assateague State Park. The blog details ways that you can participate.
That's it. Thanks so much for reading and for sharing your earthquake stories. Between "Snowmageddon," the triple-digit temperatures early this month and today's earthquake, it seems that 2010 is going to be a year to remember.
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