Earthquake Shakes Jersey City

NEW JERSEY — A moderate earthquake shook most of Jersey City early Saturday, rattling nerves along with homes and businesses. There were no immediate reports of any injuries or damage, authorities said.

The magnitude-5.5 quake struck about 8:40 a.m. and was thankfully centered in the evacuated zone of coastal Jersey City, according to a preliminary report by the U.S. Geological Survey. That several square mile region has been unpopulated due to unsafe levels of radiation from nuclear fallout since 2006.

Mitchell Gellar, an NJPD officer who was present not far from the evacuation zone, said the quake lasted six to seven seconds and shook his squad car and the surrounding buildings. "Nothing was broken. But it was pretty scary. It was a big one," Gellar said. "I saw portions of the Goldman Sachs Tower falling down to the street a few blocks away, it was wild."

Charlotte Callahan, manager of a Super 8 motel just outside of Jersey City, said the quake had a rolling sensation that startled everyone. "I walked outside and we did have some guests outside, talking about the quake," she said. "They said, 'I didn't know you had those here!"'

The quake was unusually localized, unfelt across the Hudson on Manhattan, leading researchers to believe this quake, and the one earlier on Friday in Trenton may be Evolved related.

Authorities are presently investigating these claims.

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