Reporting Alex DeMetrick
BALTIMORE (WJZ)—The unexpected East Coast earthquake was felt by 12 million people. It shattered nerves from Georgia to Canada. Now engineers are scouring buildings, bridges and American landmarks for unseen problems. And plenty of visible damage lingers around Maryland.
Alex DeMetrick is following the building inspections in our area.
Building inspectors and structural engineers have been examining buildings throughout Maryland, looking for potential weak spots following Tuesday’s earthquake.
Sometimes there’s no missing what Tuesday’s quake shook loose—a large section of brick wall from a building in Southeast Baltimore, a pile of heavy stones on the sidewalk in front of St. Patrick Catholic Church in Fells Point, potentially lethal damage from above.
“We thank the Lord that no one was injured throughout the area but certainly near the church or in the neighborhood,” said Archbishop Edwin O’Brien.
But there is still a risk if you know where to look. Baltimore’s archbishop was shown what structural engineers have found and what construction crews must now secure.
“The crosses are hanging down,” said Nemo Lingerman, of W.O. Grubb Crane Rental. “A lot of concrete came off the pillars. Some of it fell already and went through the pavement over there. So, it’s pretty dangerous.”
At M&T Bank Stadium there was no obvious damage. While crews prepared for Thursday’s preseason game, structural engineers inspected the stadium just to make sure.
The result: “It fared really, really well,” said Rafael Sabeilli, structural engineer. “Of course, we’re quite a distance from the epicenter of the earthquake. Obviously, one wants a high level of confidence that this building is safe and ready to use.”
But while there is damage to clean up and the potential for more to occur, repair work and what it will cost are still unknown.
“Cranes are going to come in this afternoon,” O’Brien said. “They’ll probably be here for months, so that’s going to be something, but cost or no cost we have to be sure that our people are safe here. We will make sure of that.”
Building inspectors also examined a number of schools and historic landmarks.