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No reported injuries following 4.8 magnitude earthquake on campus

Princeton’s Nassau Hall, a large 3 story building made of brown stone with ivy covering most of the facade, in front of it's sprawling lawn. Groups of people walk in front of the hall.
Nassau Hall.
Calvin Grover / The Daily Princetonian

An approximately 4.8 magnitude earthquake struck campus at approximately 10:25 a.m. on Friday, April 5. According to the United States Geological Survey, the epicenter of the earthquake was in Tewksbury, N.J., approximately 25 miles north of Princeton.    

A TigerAlert sent at 10:54 a.m. read, “Earthquake occurred at 10:25 a.m. No reports of injuries or damage on campus. You can resume normal activities.”


Some students reported building evacuations in response to the quake. Chloe Long ’26, who was attending class in Frist Campus Center at the time of the earthquake, told the ‘Prince’ that her professor “immediately knew it was an earthquake, and she told us all to follow her outside.”

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, earthquake procedure prescribes staying at one’s original location and moving away from doorways or anything that could fall.

“When we got outside, there were other classes out there. We continued class outside for a minute and then once there weren’t any aftershocks, we went back in and finished class,” she said.  “We were all a little rattled just because we didn’t know what was happening, and we’d never been in an earthquake before, but [my professor] was really calm and knew what to do, so I was a lot less scared. Also, it was over quickly enough that I really just had time to be confused.”  

Elisa Gonzalez ’27, who was attending Spanish class in East Pyne Hall, said that she felt “a rumble from below, but it just sounded like construction. I was in an old building, so that added to the fear.”

Gonzalez is a staff Copy editor for the ‘Prince.’

“Most of us had never been in an earthquake, myself included, and we all paused after realizing it wasn’t machinery or construction,” she said. “It was definitely scary after people started mentioning aftershocks. The fact that they could happen later at any time — like we could be walking, and then it just starts up again — was concerning.”


Valeria Zuluaga-Sanchez ’24 was in Grousbeck Hall, her dorm building, when the earthquake struck. “It felt like some heavy cart was being rolled down the hall. Later on, it felt like the building was pitching forward and back as well,” she told the ‘Prince.’

“I’ve been in an earthquake before, but it was still pretty nerve wracking, especially since I wasn’t expecting one to happen in this area of the country,” she said.

While much of the campus felt the earthquake, some students reported not feeling the tremor. “I was in the Rockefeller College common room bathroom and I didn’t know anything happened until my friend texted and asked if I had felt it," Sophia Harrison Bregman ’27 said. “I was so sad that I didn’t feel it, because I’m in GEO 103: Natural Disasters this semester, and I’ve been learning all about earthquakes, so it would have been really educational and interesting to have actually felt an earthquake.”  

By 11 a.m., construction and normal campus activities had all appeared to resume.  

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A second, aftershock tremor struck campus at approximately 5:59 p.m. with a 4.0 magnitude.

The University did not respond to a request for comment by the time of publication.  

This story is breaking and will be updated as further information becomes available.

Meghana Veldhuis ’27 is an assistant News editor for the ‘Prince.’ She is from Bergen County, N.J. and typically covers faculty and graduate students. 

Christopher Bao ’27 is an assistant News editor and the accessibility director for the ‘Prince.’ He is from Princeton, N.J. and typically covers town politics and life.

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