Loud Boom: Chief Meteorologist McCall Vrydaghs explains the science behind disturbance

Why is it we could hear the sound of a sonic boom so far from the central location?

“We don’t have a lot of mountain ranges, which can actually help a sound wave reach much further than if you live in Colorado or the rockies,” Chief Meteorologist McCall Vrydaghs explains.

Wednesday night’s conditions were also favorable for this phenomenon; a warm layer of air underneath the cold air called an “inversion” aided the sound in its travel.

Vrydaghs provides further explanation in the video above.

The noise originated from a car explosion on Parker Avenue near James H. McGee Boulevard.


People across Montgomery, Greene and Warren counties reported hearing a loud boom Wednesday night.

The loud boom originated with a vehicle explosion on Parker Avenue near James H. McGee Boulevard, Dayton police said.

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The incident prompted police to call out the Dayton Bomb Squad.

There have been no injuries they are aware of, police said.

Residents in Kettering, Beavercreek, Oakwood, Dayton and Bellbrook told this news organization, either via social media posts or email, they heard the loud boom. The reports began sometime after 10 p.m.

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The boom was reported as far south as Franklin in northern Warren County, where Renee Ward said she and her husband heard it sometime between 10:15 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.

WHIO-TV is working to learn if there could have been another reason residents outside of Dayton heard or felt the boom. WPAFB said they weren’t responsible for a sonic boom last night. We also checked with the Ohio National Guard based in Toledo. who was flying jets this week as part of training. They also said they didn’t break the sound barrier last night.

“It sounded like it was right here on my street!” said Mary Ann Mull, who lives off Spinning Road in Riverside.

In West Carrollton, Brandon McDonald said the boom shook his apartment.

According to regional dispatch, one of the first reports came to that agency from Randolph Street.

“We could hear it in the living room,” she said. “One time. That was it.”

He said he has studied astronomy and doesn’t believe a vehicle explosion would cause that kind of noise. He said he believes it could have been a sonic boom.

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