Unidentified sonic phenomena continue around the world with seemingly no explanation. Why is it that we pay much more attention to visual anomalous phenomena? Much of the study of the unexplained and mysterious centers around images and sightings, whether of Bigfoot or other cryptids, UFOs, or denizens of spirit realms or other dimensions. English speakers do tend to prioritize sight above the other senses, and many different phenomena can make similar sounds, so perhaps it’s natural that sight is most often the medium for the study of the anomalous.

Nevertheless, unidentified sonic phenomena, or USPs, are just prevalent. As MU readers know, I’m particularly interested in the mystery boom phenomenon, but anomalous acoustics of all kinds are an interest of mine. This week, strange sounds continue to frighten and baffle people worldwide as unexplained booms have been keeping residents of Cleveland’s Slavic Village neighborhood awake at night. Interestingly, as has been the case in a small percentage of these booms, anomalous flashes of light have also been reported.

Some Slavic Village residents have captured the flashes and booms on home security cameras and posted them to social media. Cleveland resident Edward McDonald told News 5 Cleveland that while the booms haven’t harmed anyone or any property yet, he believes it’s only a matter of time until they do:

What I've heard is like a loud bang, like a boom. It shakes houses, it rattles windows. It hasn't caused any destruction yet, or it hasn't caused any property damage, but it's definitely noticeable. We all know the powers of concussions, or concussion booms, and I really think that the vibration could cause some damage at some point.

The Cleveland City Council is reportedly looking into the incidents, but if this case is like any others, they’ll likely turn up very few answers. Cleveland wasn’t alone this week, though. An eerily similar boom was reported on Sunday, April 14 in the Grand'Anse area on the western coast of Haiti. Local geologists ruled out seismic or volcanic activity and local authorities remain stumped. The mystery left in the wake of the boom is reportedly “sowing anxiety and some panic in the population” and without an explanation, rumors are reportedly running wild among locals.

Meanwhile, residents of the town of Damhal Hanji Pora in the Indian state of state of Jammu and Kashmir reported a “mysterious blast-like sound” on Friday, April 19. Police rejected the idea that the boom was caused by a grenade or other munitions, but given the proximity to Pakistan and recent tensions there, there’s no telling what could have occurred.

As with all reported incidents of mysterious booms, I’m left to wonder: are these related in any way, or are they all isolated, separate incidents?

Brett Tingley

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

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