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Loud boom shakes Ahwatukee homes

Houses shaking in Ahwatukee
Posted at 4:10 PM, Oct 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-14 00:18:12-04

AHWATUKEE, AZ — Two Ahwatukee residents say this week their home shook, even hearing a loud boom, and have no idea what caused the noise.

Chris Muller lives near 17th Avenue and Chandler Boulevard and said on Tuesday he heard a loud noise and, for a moment, felt his house vibrate.

"Like a sonic boom. Or a large bird hit the side of the house," said Muller. "I went to look outside and no large bird."

Down the street, Kyle Thompson said the sound affected his home too, sounding as if the roof was coming down. 

"Part of our house or our second-floor roof was caving in, that’s what it sounded like," said Thompson. 

In trying to explain these loud booms and shaking homes, an earthquake is an unlikely reason. According to the Arizona Geological Association at UArizona, the last earthquake felt by the Phoenix area was in 2015, when a 4.1 magnitude hit Black Canyon City, well north of Ahwatukee.

The Geological Association said the most likely reason is a sonic boom.

"Sometimes atmospheric conditions that I don’t fully understand can transmit energy from supersonic training flights a long way from where the flights are occurring – possibly on the Barry M. Goldwater Air Force Range in southwestern AZ, for example," said a spokesperson for the Geological Association.