Sonic Boom From F-15 Fighter Jet Rattles Central Illinois Communities


A loud noise heard in central Illinois, sending residents flooding to area police stations Tuesday, was a sonic boom from an overhead F-15 fighter jet, according to state officials.

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency was made aware of "a large noise and shaking felt by many residents throughout central Illinois" at approximately 11:20 a.m. Tuesday.

"Upon further review, it was determined that an F-15 fighter jet in the airspace above central Illinois course corrected creating a sonic boom.  When the aircraft broke the sound barrier, the pressure wave created an audible noise and minor shaking in the region," IEMA officials said in a release.

No damage damage associated with the incident has been reported at this time.

Earlier on Tuesday, Rebecca Clark with IEMA said the agency was investigating with state and local partners what she called a “loud boom" from her office in Springfield.

“It was just a loud boom, an audible boom that I heard. I didn't feel anything — it was just a sound," she said.

Clark said state and local agencies were checking to make sure their critical infrastructure was fine.

Decatur Fire Department’s Deputy Chief Dan Kline told the Herald & Review that a booming noise was heard about 11:28 a.m., prompting concerned calls to Decatur’s police and fire departments.

“I went up on the roof of Station One after we heard it and looked around but didn’t see any smoke or anything,” Kline said. He said the noise was so loud that he thought “someone had dropped something heavy upstairs” in the fire department building.

Springfield Police Lt. Jason Brands said officers received numerous reports from residents who heard a loud noise, and that other local communities received the same type of reports from the public.

“We have no idea it was. There have been absolutely no reports of anything actually damaged. It's just that everyone has been calling saying they heard an explosion," Brands said, adding that there was speculation it was “something in the atmosphere."

NBC 5 Chicago/Associated Press
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