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Unexplained Boom Main

Mysterious Loud Boom Rumbles through Kentucky County

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Eastern part of the county rocked by strange rumble

Social media was bustling with chatter over the weekend regarding an unanticipated and thunderous boom that occurred Saturday evening. But days later, people are still searching for a solid explanation.

Shelby County Emergency Management Agency Director Paul Whitman said he was asleep at the time but began receiving text messages around 9:15 Saturday night questioning a loud boom that radiated through the eastern portion of the county.

Whitman said there were reports from those in Mount Eden to Bagdad.

Comments on social media indicate the noise could be heard around Cropper, Guist Creek, Pleasureville, Waddy, near Shelby County High School and the fairgrounds, as well, among other eastern and southern parts of the county.

“I haven’t had any reports from the western part of the county,” Whitman said, noting there were reports fairly far south of the county, as well.

“Frankfort PD got a call on it,” he said, noting there were also reports as far south as Laural County.

“That’s what indicates to me it may have been some aircraft going over,” he said, noting there was no way to be certain of that theory, however.

Whitman said it’s difficult to deduce for certain what may have caused the boom.

“To date, there’s been no reports of anything destroyed, no fires, no one hurt, no emergency situation created as a result of this noise– whatever it was,” he said.

He noted that he’s not familiar with any similar noise occurrence that has been reported previously in the county aside from a small earthquake that took place several years ago. But he added that would be an unlikely cause for Saturday’s incident.

According to USGS (U.S. Geological Survey), a trivial earthquake took place in Kentucky on Saturday. However, the minuscule seismic activity is an unlikely source of the boom as it occurred 12 hours prior in Greenup– about 160 miles east of Shelbyville.

Some on social media suggested Tannerite, an exploding target used for firearms practice, might have been caused the loud boom. However, Whitman doesn’t feel this is a logical explanation, either.

“That’s not going to affect that large of an area,” he said.

He added that while they would love to look further into the matter, there is little indication as to where they would even start looking.

“If somebody had some specific information, then we could do something,” he said, noting all they have right now is a noise. “It’s like a needle in a haystack.”

Whitman is confident, however, that the noise isn’t something to worry too much about.

“If it was something serious, somebody would have called it in, we would have heard about it by now I would think,” he said, noting a good deal of time has passed at this point.

He added that as of Monday morning, still no reports had come into dispatch regarding the noise.

“If it was something big, whatever agency it was would have called us,” he said.

If nothing else, the incident has answered the age-old question: If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around, there’s a good chance we can hear it.

“Somebody hears it,” Whitman said with a laugh, “Especially if they are on Facebook.”


If anyone has heard the boom first hand, feel free to leave a comment in the comment section below or you can post it on our forum or leave a comment on our facebook page.

Ashley Sutter
The Sentinel-News


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