Mysterious booms unexplained

Residents along the Montgomery-Warren county line reported hearing loud booms Sunday night.

Clearcreek Twp. firefighters responded to a call at 6:17 p.m. call from a resident alarmed by a boom outside his home near the Dayton-Wright Brothers Airport. The homeowner on Kitty Hawk Drive suggested a transformer could have exploded.

“Our guys didn’t find anything,” Fire Chief Bob Kidd said, adding his department had no other similar calls.

At the airport, an employee heard a boom Sunday night, but was unable to identify the cause.

“It wasn’t airport related,” airport spokesperson Linda Hughes said. “It didn’t seem to affect anybody there.”

On Monday, Duke Energy and Dayton Power & Light were dealing with outages around the area, but none could explain the booms Sunday night, officials said.

“I don’t think DPL had anything to do with it,” said Debbie Carity with DP&L corporate communications.

Residents in southern Montgomery County and northern Warren County reported as many as three booms between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. in calls to dispatchers and the Cox Media Group Ohio newsroom.

One Miamisburg man said the loud booms sounded like an explosion, and that the last one sounded louder than the first.

“Our neighbors were in the street trying to determine what was going on,” he wrote in an email to the newsroom.

“Loud booms being heard … Springboro, Miamisburg, Centerville, Kettering areas … any ideas?” read another email.

The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office sent deputies out to investigate, but there were no additional booms and there was no sign of damage in the area, according to the sheriff’s office.

Officials at Wright Patterson Air Force Base said that no aircraft were flying in the area that could have caused a sonic boom by breaking the sound barrier.

WHIO-TV’s Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Rich Wirdzek said the booms could have been weather related, “but the setup for thundersnow was not very favorable.”

Wirdzek said lightning bolts could have been triggered with “enough atmospheric and instability to create cloud growth.”

The atmospheric setup determines the direction and audible level of the thunder or “audio channel,” according to Wirdzek.”It’s conceivable that the audio channel could have been directed toward the ground and slowed…making it sound longer and louder.”

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