Jan 15, 2019 I Brett Tingley

Unexplained Booms and Mysterious Flashes of Light in Utah

It seems like each week, maybe even each day, there are new reports of unexplained booms or explosions in the sky and no answers left in their wake. This week’s most mysterious unexplained booms come from Utah, where residents of South Salt Lake say something strange is occurring at night. For years, residents say, bright flashes followed by loud booms have woken them up in the middle of the night and police have been unable to pin down what’s causing the phenomenon.

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Nighttime view of Salt Lake City, Utah as seen from the ISS.

One South Salt Lake City resident, Karl Turley, told local news outlets that the noises and flashes can be terrifying, particularly for former military service members like himself:

Our neighborhood got shaken up where it just exploded out of nowhere, causing us to kind of go in a frenzy. It is loud enough that it was explosive. I’m not the only veteran who lives in this community so it can kind of shake you up when you hear it.

Surveillance cameras on Turley’s home caught one of the explosions on video. The South Salt Lake City Police Department is currently reviewing the footage to try and determine the mystery boom’s source. 

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Salt Lake City, Utah

Less than an hour to the north, people throughout Ogden, Utah heard and felt a similar boom this past weekend. The noise and tremor occurred around 11:00 am on January 5 and was described as similar to a sonic boom by some witnesses, while others described it as “like a cross between a sonic boom and an earthquake tremor.” Concerned residents flooded local news stations with calls and emails to try and figure out what the noises were, but so far there are no answers.

The nearby Hill Air Force Base is a prime suspect in the case of the Ogden boom, but so far the base has not claimed responsibility. If these booms in Utah are anything like the other myriad booms being heard and felt throughout the world, we’ll likely never hear about them again. With these booms being reported at such a high frequency, you’d think that more attention would be paid to them by law enforcement and major news outlets. I don’t know about you, but I find the silence pretty unsettling. Who knows something we don’t?

Brett Tingley

Brett Tingley is a writer and musician living in the ancient Appalachian mountains.

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