A 5.2 magnitude earthquake has shaken part of the central United States.

The U.S. Geological Survey says the epicenter of Friday's earthquake was about seven kilometers northeast of the town of Belmont, in the central state of Illinois.

There were no immediate reports of injuries but police departments across the region say they were flooded with calls to their emergency lines from worried residents.

The earthquake shook skyscrapers in Chicago (Illinois), hundreds of miles to the north of the epicenter, and rattled windows as far west as the state of Iowa's capital of Des Moines.

The U.S. Geological survey says the earthquake hit in what is known as the Illinois basin-Ozark dome region.

It says the largest earthquake to hit the area was a 5.4 magnitude earthquake that damaged southern parts of the central state of Illinois in 1968.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.