According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), a magnitude
5.1 earthquake struck northeastern New York State, approximately 15 miles
southwest of Plattsburgh, New York, on Saturday, April 20, 2002, at 6:50
a.m. EDT. The moderate earthquake was felt in Buffalo, New York, and as
far away as Cleveland Ohio; Portland, Maine; and Baltimore, Maryland due
to the hard bedrock found in the northeast.
Damage was minimal and Plattsburgh media reported that two chimneys had
fallen and that some windows had broken in various residences.
Additionally, a church in Au Sable Forks very near the earthquake's
epicenter, was reported to have experienced some limited cracking.
According to Kevin Murphy, Director of Public Works for the City of
Plattsburgh, no structural or nonstructural damage was observed in any
city bridges, roads, underground facilities or city owned buildings.
Public Works crews had been out inspecting damage since the earthquake
Scott Docteur, an engineer for the New York State Department of
Transportation (NYSDOT) told MCEER that one piece of state route 9N had
been damaged but remained open for single lane traffic. The small segment
of road collapsed when the soil embankment below it shifted out from
underneath. Docteur also said that the NYSDOT closed one bridge on the
South Junction Road just south of Plattsburgh for further inspection.
MCEER learned that the bridge had been reopened early Sunday morning.