4.1 earthquake reported near Dover

U.S. Geological Survey map.

A 4.1 magnitude earthquake was reported late Thursday afternoon. The quake’s epicenter was near Dover, The U.S. Geological Survey reported.

The Geological Survey (USGS) confirmed that the earthquake occurred at 4:48 pm today, The coordinates put the center of the quake ten miles northeast of Dover, in the Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge, at a depth of eight miles.

Most of North America east of the Rocky Mountains has infrequent earthquakes. However, quakes are more frequent in a few areas including the Philadelphia – Wilmington urban corridor, the Geological Survey reported.

However, most of the region from the Rockies to the Atlantic can go years without an earthquake large enough to be felt, and several U.S. states have never reported a damaging earthquake.


A 2011 a more powerful 5.8 earthquake centered in Virginia caused damage to the Washington Monument and National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. That quake was felt in Delaware.

East of the Rockies, an earthquake can be felt over an area more than ten times larger than a similar magnitude earthquake on the west coast. It would not be unusual for a magnitude 4.0 earthquake in eastern or central North America to be felt by a significant percentage of the population in many communities more than 60 mi from its source, the Geological Survey reported.

Social media posts indicated that the quake was felt in Wilmington.

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