Moderate quake hits temblor-prone Oklahoma

One of the strongest earthquakes ever recorded in Oklahoma rattled a state where seismic activity has become a growing concern, sending tremors through six neighboring states, the United States Geological Survey said on Saturday.

The quake, which struck 14 km (9 miles) northwest of Pawnee in north-central Oklahoma at 7:02 a.m. CDT (1302 GMT), had a magnitude of 5.6, matching in strength a temblor that hit the state in 2011, the USGS reported on its website. There were no immediate reports of injuries.

The earthquake, which had a depth of 6.6 km (4.1 miles), could offer fresh ammunition to environmentalists concerned about the side-effects of oil and gas production, which has been blamed for a spike in minor to moderate quakes in the region.

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