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Small Earthquake Rattles Manhattan

January 17, 2001

NEW YORK (AP) _ Pictures rattled, bottles shook and residents as far away as Newark, N.J., were rattled Wednesday morning by a magnitude 2.4 earthquake centered on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.

No injuries or damage were reported.

Dan Davis, a geology professor at Stony Brook University on Long Island, said the earthquake began at 7:34 a.m. and lasted a few seconds.

Jim Donaghy was shaving inside his Upper East Side apartment when he felt a boom, followed by a slight shaking.

``You know those big construction Dumpsters they use when doing work on a building? It sounded like someone dropped one of those,″ Donaghy said. ``That’s what I thought it was.″

The rattling could be felt as far away as Newark, 13 miles to the south.

Davis, a geology professor at Stony Brook University on Long Island, said earthquakes are not rare in the densely populated area. He said the last significant quake was a 4.0 tremor in 1985 in a Westchester County suburb, about 15 miles north of New York.

Standing in front of a building where residents reported ``significant shaking,″ Mayor Rudolph Giuliani said there was no need for New Yorkers to worry because even a more powerful earthquake, magnitude 4 or 5, ``would not have an impact on large buildings.″

Donaghy, who once experienced a magnitude 4.0 earthquake in Los Angeles, said the incident left him curious but otherwise unfazed.

``This is New York,″ Donaghy said. ``You sort of get used to having a lot of crazy things happening around you.″

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