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Earthquakes rattle northern Alberta, no initial reports of damage: federal agency

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A series of earthquakes and aftershocks were reported in northern Alberta Tuesday evening, with some saying the shakes were felt in Edmonton.

Earthquakes Canada issued an alert for a 5.2-magnitude quake at 4:45 p.m. at a depth of four kilometres.

Another was issued for a 6.0 magnitude at 5:55 p.m. at a depth of two kilometres, but the magnitude was later adjusted to 5.8.

At 7:45 p.m., Earthquakes Canada confirmed both events were earthquakes.

The quakes occurred near Reno, Alta., which is about 40 kilometres south of Peace River.

The cause of the quakes was unknown as of Tuesday evening. Earthquakes can occur in Alberta both naturally and as the result of human activity. 

The Earthquakes Canada representative said several aftershocks had been recorded as well. 

According to the agency, the 5.8-magnitude quake is one of the largest recorded in Alberta and was lightly felt in eastern British Columbia and western Alberta. It is potentially the largest earthquake the province has experienced; according to the Alberta Geological Survey, the largest documented earthquake in Alberta occured about 100 kilometres northwest of Grande Prairie in April 2001 and registered at a 5.4 local magnitude. 

There is some discrepancy in the size of Tuesday's largest quake; the United States Geological Survey has recorded it as a 5.3 magnitude. 

No damage had been reported to the agency yet.

MORE EVENTS RECORDED OVERNIGHT

Three more 4.0-magnitude quakes were recorded by the agency later Tuesday evening and early Wednesday morning: at 11:16 p.m., at 11:33 p.m., and at 5.46 a.m. 

All were recorded in the same area northeast of Reno. 

Reno is located roughly 450 kilometres northwest of Edmonton.

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