The U.S. Geological Survey has confirmed that a 5.9 magnitude earthquake struck central Virginia at 1:53 pm EDT. It is the strongest quake to hit the Virginia area since 1897.

Tremors were felt throughout the east coast, including D.C., Boston, Raleigh and New York City. The tremors were shallow at about 3.7 miles deep, which may explain why the shaking as so widespread.

A USGS official was quoted by The Washington Post to say, We would certainly expect aftershocks.