US Air Force apologises for sonic boom that shook homes and businesses in AberystwythPosted: March 12, 2014
The air force said several F-15E Strike Eagle aircraft were conducting ‘a challenging air-to-air training mission’
The sonic boom that shook homes and businesses in Aberystwyth was probably caused by a US Air Force fighter jet.
People in Aberystwyth reported feeling a huge tremor on Monday afternoon , that reportedly smashed windows and cause ceiling tiles to fall.
The sonic boom, a sound associated with the shock waves created by an object travelling through the air faster than the speed of sound, occurred at approximately 1.10pm.
Sonic booms generate huge energy, sounding like an explosion.
Although a Ministry of Defence timetable confirms operational low flying training by fast jets and Hercules transport aircraft were due to take place on Monday, a a spokeswoman said there were no flights in the Aberystwyth area and there was no evidence a jet fighter was responsible for the boom.
Now the US Air Force has apologised for the disturbance saying several of its F-15E jets from RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk had been training near the coast.
It said one plane inadvertently broke the sound barrier, causing the boom.
In a statement, the US Air Force’s 48th fighter wing said: “We can confirm that an aircraft from RAF Lakenheath is likely to have been responsible for the sonic boom reported over Aberystwyth.
“At that time, several F-15E Strike Eagle aircraft were conducting a challenging air-to-air training mission.
“Typically, this would be carried out over water but the airspace to be used was lost to us and the jets were re-routed to the Wales military training airspace.
“During the course of the training exercise, near the coast and in the vicinity of Aberystwyth, one of the aircraft, already travelling at high speed, inadvertently and briefly went supersonic at around 18,000ft and in the process was likely to have caused the noise that was reported online.
“We offer our sincerest apologies for any disturbance or concern that this may have caused. We continue to emphasise airspeed restrictions in our pre-flight briefings to minimise the possibility of inadvertently breaching the sound barrier.”
Sourced from walesonline