Earthquake in NYC reported, linked to Roosevelt Island 'explosion' reports

An earthquake was reported in New York City Tuesday morning and may have prompted reports of an explosion on the East River's Roosevelt Island.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported a 1.7 magnitude earthquake near Astoria, Queens. 

This comes hours after FDNY officials responded to reports of a "building shaking and explosion" on Roosevelt Island. 


The star shows where a 1.7-magnitude earthquake was recorded in Astoria, Queens. (US Geological Survey)

No explosion was confirmed, and the USGS said no injuries or damage was reported from the earthquake. New York City Mayor Eric Adams's administration also attributed the explosion reports to the quake.

Allan Drury, a spokesperson for Consolidated Edison, said officials at the utility suspect that the quake caused the explosions, since they happened around the same time.

Drury said there were no power outages.

"About 5:45 or so, all of a sudden I felt my bed moving, and the building moving, and a very loud sound," resident Georgette Sinclair told FOX 5 NY. "I woke up and thought there was an earthquake."

Calls were received just before 6 a.m. for the reports at 580 Main St., which is just south of Roosevelt Island Bridge and Tram. 

SkyFOX was over the scene, which showed several emergency response vehicles.

Several tweets across the social media platform "X" reported people saying they were awoken by a loud noise, and that they felt their buildings shaking.


Several emergency response vehicles were seen on Roosevelt Island.

it is unclear if the source of the reported explosion was the earthquake, and it is also unclear if residents in other parts of New York City felt tremors.

Can destructive earthquakes hit NYC?

Quakes on the West Coast – and recently Japan – make headlines for their damage, but they're a threat to the East Coast as well.

"An earthquake is an earthquake, no matter [where] it happens," Dr. Lucy Jones, a seismologist, told FOX 5 NY. "The fact that earthquakes cannot be predicted is a large part of what makes them so frightening. We are much more afraid of something when we don't know when it's coming."

The New York City Area Consortium for Earthquake Loss Mitigation says the city's earthquake hazard is moderate. However, it is unclear if one of the fault lines could be a source of a strong earthquake. And the potential damage concerns many experts.

"I think you should be more concerned about your older mid-rise buildings, the 5- to 10-story level," Jones said. "Those probably haven't been engineered for winds, and therefore will be more susceptible to what happens in an earthquake."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Click here for the full Weather Extremes report on NYC and earthquakes