The East Coast earthquake caused calling spikes for Sprint, Verizon and AT&T, but no reports of network damage.
The Aug. 23 earthquake that rocked the East Coast also led
to a significant spike in wireless call volume, according to carrier
"We are currently experiencing an intermittent mass calling
event as is expected following an incident of this nature," Scott Sloat, a
spokesperson for Sprint, told eWEEK at 4 p.m. EDT,
roughly two hours after the earthquake came and went. "There [is] no reported
impact to our network, and we encourage customers to be patient, and send a text
message rather than call at this time."
An AT&T spokesperson offered a similar take: "We have no
reports of network damage but are seeing heavy call volumes."
Verizon Wireless likewise reported no network damage. "There
was some network congestion for some but certainly not all customers as a
result of spikes in calling in parts of the East for a short time after the
tremors," Tom Pica, a spokesperson for the carrier, wrote in an email.
"Everything has been returning to normal quickly now that the tremors have
ended. We'll continue to monitor the network."
Tremors were reportedly felt from New England to North
Carolina, with officials placing the epicenter in Mineral, Va. In New York City
and Washington, D.C.,
office workers flooded into the streets. However, despite an explosion of tweets, phone
calls and worry, damage from the earthquake was apparently minimal. New
York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg tweeted
"As ever, we urge New Yorkers to call 911 only in cases of actual
Nonetheless, aftershocks continued to ripple through the
East Coast's infrastructure for hours after the shaking died down. Amtrak
trains and Washington's Metro system were experiencing slowdowns, with
airports reporting plane delays.
And then, of course, came the jokes. "'I felt that
earthquake last week'-Brooklyn hipster," read one representative tweet
. A photo titled "DC Earthquake
making the rounds online, featured a plastic lawn chair
toppled over on the grass.
Possible aftershocks aside, it could have been
Nicholas Kolakowski on Twitter