Earthquake jolts Rhode Island in early morning hours

The earthquake, which took place at 3:43 a.m. on Wednesday, July 22, 2015, was centered at Fields Point near the Port of Providence.

An earthquake jolted Rhode Island early Wednesday{}morning, with residents reporting they heard rumbles and felt their houses shaking.

The magnitude 2.3 earthquake{}took place at 3:43 a.m. It was centered at Fields Point near the Port of Providence.

The United States Geological Survey recorded{}the quake 1 mile{}southwest{}of East{}Providence at a depth of 12.1{}miles.

The earthquake leaves many people wondering if it compromised infrastructure at the busy port or shake a cluster of fuel tanks located nearby.

"We have not encountered any operation or safety issues," Bill Fischer of the Port of Providence told NBC 10 News via email. "All terminal services are functioning normally." {}

National Grid has an LNG tank on site and hopes to build a liquefaction facility. David Graves, who handles media relations for National Grid, said the earthquake "did not affect the LNG area at all."

In the greater scheme of potential earthquake activity for all areas with tall buildings in New England, Terry Tullis, a geophysics professor at Brown University, said building codes should be looked at.

NBC 10 News{}received multiple viewer comments that they felt or heard something around that time.

"The whole house really shook," Joanne Reilly of Johnston said. "Luckily, nothing fell and nothing broke. I thought it was a tractor trailer going byI jumped up because I thought it crashed."

"It felt like a either a truck going by or a plane going by," said Laura McNamara of Barrington. "But, it was quick. It was, like, three (to) five seconds."

"Really loud in Bristol. Sounded like a very low plane then the house shook," Chris wrote on NBC 10's Facebook page.

"I heard a rumble and thought it was a thunderstorm. My dog is sticking to me like glue," said Patricia of Greene.

"Earthquake felt in Johnston. Thought it was a car accident in front of my house!" Alissa said in a tweet.

There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.

Tullis, said he would be concerned if a magnitude 4.0 earthquake hit the area.

The biggest earthquake on record in Rhode Island took place in 1951. It was centered in Kingston and clocked in at a magnitude 4.7.

The largest ever in New England occurred in 1775. It happened near Cape Ann, Massachusetts and was a magnitude 6.0.

Earthquakes are not unusual in Southern New England. The area has had 15 magnitude 1.5 or larger earthquakes in the last year.

A series of small earthquakes rattled eastern Connecticut near the Rhode Island border{}in January.

In February, there was a 2.0 magnitude earthquake south of Newport.

And as recent as Tuesday, a 1.5 magnitude earthquake took place in Plymouth, New Hampshire.

According to the United States Geological Survey, anything under 5.4 is considered minor.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off