Aberystwyth sonic boom apology from USAF
- 12 March 2014
- From the section Mid Wales
A sonic boom that shook homes and businesses in Aberystwyth was probably caused by a US Air Force fighter jet, military chiefs have admitted.
A supermarket in the town had to close some of its tills after tremors caused ceiling tiles to come down on Monday.
The US Air Force 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."