Strong quake hits Nevada but no immediate reports of injury, damage

There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties. PHOTO: USGS

LOS ANGELES (REUTERS, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE) - A strong earthquake with a magnitude of 6.5 struck a remote, sparsely populated area of Nevada about halfway between Reno and Las Vegas early on Friday (May 15), the US Geological Survey said.

There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties, according to a Nye County Sheriff's dispatcher.

The temblor occurred shortly after 4am local time, about 57km west-northwest of Tonopah, the seat of Nye County, at a depth of 7.6km, the USGS said on its website.

It could be felt as far away as Sacramento, California, 560km away, according to social media posts.

Andrew Leon, 23, of Tonopah, said the quake struck while he was asleep.

"Yeah, it woke me up, like being shaked," said Mr Leon, a cashier at a Burger King fast-food restaurant in Tonopah.

"It's all we're talking about this morning," he told Reuters by telephone. "When I opened up here, there's nothing broke - just stuff knocked off the shelves."

Nye County, about 322km north of Las Vegas, includes a portion of Death Valley National Park. It has 43,000 residents spread out over an area that is roughly equivalent to the size of Vermont and New Hampshire combined.

The Los Angeles Times reported that an average of five quakes of between 6.0 and 7.0 in magnitude hit California and Nevada each year.

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