The USGS confirms a 5.8 earthquake near Mineral, VA.  This quake has rattled several East Coast states and has prompted evacuations of the Capitol and the Pentagon.

FOX Capitol Hill Producer Chad Pergram experienced the quake first-hand:

Capitol rumbling seemed to come in 2 waves. Shook first for about 5 seconds. Then intensified...shaking the entire Capitol. Longest shake was probably close to 30 seconds.  Chandliers swinging in Capitol. Some small art off walls.

FOX Capitol Hill Producer Trish Turner was also on the Hill when the quake struck:

First wave felt akin to how u feel a subway going under a building. 2nd much more profound. I was up in the 3rd floor of the Capitol in my office. I fell against the wall.  First thought: a plane hit the building.  Mass chaos.  Intercom system didn't work.  Officers were shouting up the stairways, "Evacuate!"

All descended stairs. 

Small aftershocks are reportedly being felt up and down the East Coast from the Virginia Quake.

From FOX News Radio's Todd Starnes:

I'm at LaGuardia Airport -- the quake was felt here, too. Passengers, TSA officers -- everyone on cell phones and gathering around tv monitors.

Additional info:

  • So far there are no initial reports of injuries at this time.
  • Newark and JFK Airports in/near New York City were briefly closed, air traffic control towers evacuated.  Flights have resumed.
  • Flights at Washington D.C. airports have been grounded.
  • Amtrak is going to inspect all stations, warns to expect delays.
  • 2 nuclear reactors taken offline near quake site in Va.; No damage reported.  Back-up diesel generators kicked in almost immediately.  Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesperson says the plants are safe.
  • All National Mall monuments and memorials closed, evacuated.
  • Reports of chunks of ceiling falling at Washington's Union Station.
  • Washington National Cathedral suffered damage to its central tower and pinnacles.
  • Damage reported at the Ecuador Embassy in Washington, D.C.

For many on the East Coast, this is a rare enough event, that this is the first time they've experienced an earthquake.  But is this something that scientists expected?  What's the science behind the quake?

Professor John Rundell is a seismologist at the University of California - Davis:

The shaking from the earthquake was felt over a wide-spread area in the Eastern third of the United States.

Of course, it was felt near the epicenter, by Margie Ruttenberg in Washington, D.C:

As well as in New York City, where Lou Lacerra works:

And further upstate, like in the NY capital of Albany, where Shannon Malloy lives:

Even to the west, including Columbus, OH, where Matt Bruning of FOX News Affiliate WTVN reports:

And south of the epicenter down into North Carolina, where this woman initially thought it was construction:

Tune into your local FOX News Radio Affiliate for more on this developing story.