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Mysterious Booms Over the Past Year Have San Diego Residents Rattled

San Diego often tops the lists of people looking to move to a place with great temperatures, great beaches, and great amenities. It rarely appears on the lists of places with great booms – until recently when the beautiful California city was suddenly hit by mysterious booms that no one seems to know the source of or wants to take credit for. Residents, tourists bureaus, animals at the San Diego Zoo – they all want to cool it with the boom booms. Will that happen or will San Diego end up like so many other locales around the world with no answers to the mysterious sounds they’re being plagued by?

“People from Del Mar to Chula Vista took to social media Wednesday afternoon to report a “boom” that shook doors and startled pets, leading many to speculate that the region had experienced a short, mild earthquake. Posts on Twitter and Facebook described a loud boom, accompanied by shaking doors and cabinets.”

That afternoon boom was reported by the San Diego Tribune on January 15, 2020. A U.S. Geological Survey spokesman quickly said it wasn’t an earthquake, an ongoing exercise at Camp Pendleton with artillery fire had been canceled for the day, the San Diego-based Naval Air Forces said none of the Navy’s aircraft were the source of the boom, and Marine Corps officials from the MCAS Miramar-based 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing also denied responsibility. That boom remained unsolved.

“Some sort of weird shaking thing happened in San Diego a few minutes ago. Didn’t feel like an earthquake. More like a bizarre wind gust. Not sure what it was, but I’m not in favor of more bad things happening.”

One year later, on the afternoon of February 16, 2021, San Diego got hit by another boom which the USGA quickly reported was not an earthquake. Reports on this one came from Rancho Bernardo on the north side, 30 miles south from Chula Vista and 30 miles east from El Cajon. This time, no reported comments from the military.

“For the second time in about three weeks, residents from across San Diego County reported feeling a mysterious shaking — or in some cases hearing a loud boom — late in the afternoon Wednesday.”

That was around 5 pm on March 10, 2021, and the USGA reported that it was not an earthquake. (Do you detect a pattern here?) Again, no reported comments from the military, but local officials seem to be ruling out sonic booms or artillery fire anyway. A new theory came from Humberto Mendoza Garcilazo, a researcher at the Center of Scientific Research and Higher Education, who suspected stormy weather and atmospheric pressure changes, but National Weather Service meteorologist Brandt Maxwell told the San Diego Union Tribune there were no thunderstorms in the area and “even with a strong cold front, you won’t get that kind of rumbling.”

So, no answers … only denials and silence. The booms occurred in the same area at about the same time of day. Earthquakes and weather are easy to rule out – records of both are in the public domain. The military is supposed to notify the public of unusual noise occurrence due to exercises or testing – but no one would be surprised if secret operations were not reported until possibly later with an “Oops, we’re sorry.” However, that hasn’t happened in San Diego. These booms bracket the coronavirus pandemic – could they be from secret military operations related to it? If the military is ruled out, what else could they be?

These radio bursts clearly standout against background noise.

That’s the question being asked around the world as these mysterious sounds are heard more and more frequently. The media seems concerned in the moment, but quickly moves on to the next big news. Is it time for an independent organization to investigate these booms? Are there secret files or a secret internal group for mysterious booms like there is for UFOs? Both are possible security threats.

We’ll continue to report these mysterious sounds until someone gives an answer. Until then, report, record and repeat.

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Paul Seaburn is the editor at Mysterious Universe and its most prolific writer. He’s written for TV shows such as "The Tonight Show", "Politically Incorrect" and an award-winning children’s program. He's been published in “The New York Times" and "Huffington Post” and has co-authored numerous collections of trivia, puzzles and humor. His “What in the World!” podcast is a fun look at the latest weird and paranormal news, strange sports stories and odd trivia. Paul likes to add a bit of humor to each MU post he crafts. After all, the mysterious doesn't always have to be serious.
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