Another late-night loud boom – mystery so far

1:02 AM: We heard it too; have since received a phone call and various messages. Police are checking it out, and the scanner indicates 911 has received more than a few calls, too. We’ll update here if we hear anything definitive is found.

1:16 AM: Just to note – about 15 minutes have gone by, and there’s no report of smoke, fire, injury, anywhere, so far. Police are still checking out some of the various reports called in to 911.

2:11 AM: Nothing reported found, that we’ve heard. A WSB’er who lives on the northwest edge of The Junction reported a flash from outside concurrent with the boom, though.

53 Replies to "Another late-night loud boom - mystery so far"

  • Amanda August 4, 2012 (1:05 am)

    Yaa! Who does that! Thanks for giving us a heart attack!

  • liz m August 4, 2012 (1:11 am)

    SO loud! Not the usual occasional firework.

    • WSB August 4, 2012 (1:19 am)

      A similar incident a year? two? back involved an M-80-type explosive set off in a dumpster/trash can in The Junction – police found the source of that one before too long. There’s still no report of them honing in on anything here, so it just might remain a mystery …

  • JanS August 4, 2012 (1:14 am)

    Admiral District..never heard a thing…you must have a livelier neighborhood..

  • Trying2Sleep! August 4, 2012 (1:14 am)

    Very loud boom between Dakota & Andover!
    Hope they catch these morons.

  • Franny August 4, 2012 (1:19 am)

    Yeah we’re between Dakota and Andover too and it shook our house a little bit. So it’s someone setting off fireworks like the porta potty thing?

    • WSB August 4, 2012 (1:21 am)

      Just heard from a WSB’er who lives on the northwest edge of The Junction and says that concurrent with the boom was a bright flash from outside her place.

  • SAR August 4, 2012 (1:27 am)

    I heard it loud at California and Raymond.

  • ALC August 4, 2012 (1:33 am)

    I am also from between Dakota & Andover West of Calif. The boom woke me up & scared my animals. Single boom & nothing more. Pretty deep sound. I was sure I would hear fire trucks and did not. I hope they find out what it was so that we can feel rest assured. Thanks W Sea blog for coverage.

  • spanky August 4, 2012 (1:35 am)

    Anybody with a scanner know if they checked the old Genessee Hill school? We also live between Dakota and Andover, and that would have been my guess.

  • whattheheckisthatnoise August 4, 2012 (1:37 am)

    My animals are running around and hiding under my legs! They’re scared and so am I!

  • sam crowley August 4, 2012 (1:54 am)

    We live on 48th ave between Genesee/oregon. Entire family was woken by one single large “boom” noise that shook the windows in our house. All our pets are freaked out.
    Nothing since.
    Thanks WSB for your 24/7 coverage of our neighborhood.

  • Strike'em out Kinney August 4, 2012 (2:20 am)

    So dont, hesitatepp picture in the woods.

  • matttafakt August 4, 2012 (6:55 am)

    Really loud explosions that lasted for about 20 minutes after midnight last night in South San Francisco. My “munitions expert military bud” said “wow”! My friends in Oakland heard them too and said they saw “flashes”. There are No Reports! Hmmmm? The Explosions were just as loud 20 miles from where i am, to where my friends in the East Bay are. Not Fireworks.. these were HUGE!!

  • bsmomma August 4, 2012 (6:55 am)

    Didn’t hear the 1st boom. We got home in N. Admiral around 2am. Heard a loud boom about 2:20/30. Sounded deep and echoed for quite a while. Creepy.

  • KD August 4, 2012 (7:14 am)

    I’m in Highland Park and heard 3 of the loud booms west of me, and way west of Delridge like it was Morgan Junction or north of there. The 3 booms were all within about 20-25 mins. It also definetfily was not usual M80’s-sounding.

  • Dano August 4, 2012 (7:44 am)

    I am so sick and tired of this juvenile, thoughtless, “setting off fireworks / explosives” S#*T!….. To whomever is doing it, PLEASE STOP already!!!! The community is weary of it, and it hurts our animals…. Both our pets and our wildlife.

  • JoAnne August 4, 2012 (7:53 am)

    Only heard the one loud one that woke me up.

  • bsmomma August 4, 2012 (7:57 am)

    Theeeey’rrrre Baaaaack………..

  • GAnative August 4, 2012 (8:09 am)

    53rd between Dakota and Andover – I don’t know what a M80 sounds like but 1 loud boom woke me up in the middle of the night but it wasn’t close by as all the car alarms that it set of were in the distance.

  • Strike'em out Kinney August 4, 2012 (9:05 am)

    Possible cause:
    “A sonic boom is basically a very loud noise that is caused by the shock wave generated when an aircraft accelerates to a supersonic speed. The compressed air basically “breaks” when the aircraft begins moving faster than the speed of sound, giving off what can be best described as a loud explosion”

    This same scenario happened two years ago and was heard as far away as Portland.

  • Mel August 4, 2012 (10:01 am)

    Let’s try a shotgun?… Heard that crap 42nd @QFC

  • subwlf August 4, 2012 (10:26 am)

    It was underground. This has been happening in various areas due to aquifers running lower than ever… A sheet of granite ceiling will fall and make the massive boom (sometimes shaking in immediate locale as well). Do a google on “booms” and you’ll see stories here and there on it… There is likely to be a few more to come or maybe not. :D

    • WSB August 4, 2012 (10:41 am)

      First time I’ve heard THAT one. Anyone wants to research aquifers in the area, this came up, but I won’t get to read it till later, we’re about to run out to cover a few things …

  • Alki Resident August 4, 2012 (11:06 am)

    Explain the flash of light then subwif.

  • MB August 4, 2012 (11:27 am)

    We are in highland park and heard 3 last night, still loud enough to scare us. But house wasn’t shaking.

  • Dan August 4, 2012 (12:06 pm)

    one of my lovely neighbors decided to show off to his buddies by lighting off a homemade firework. I noticed it as I was pulling into my alley lady night.

  • JA August 4, 2012 (12:12 pm)

    Heard it on Genesee hill at 52nd too – woke me up with flash and boom – shook the house.

  • Gary August 4, 2012 (1:36 pm)

    There was a loud boom & device found at about 3:45 AM last thursday in a driveway off Graham & 46th. Police were called out, then returned to the scene again the next afternoon. I understand it was a home-made bomb/device placed behind a car. Whoever is setting these things off should be charged as a domestic terrorist.

  • Bill August 4, 2012 (2:04 pm)

    60-120 seconds after the boom I saw a white SUV moving rather quickly up 51st Ave SW between Genesee and Andover. Sounded to me like the boom came from the school. Also thought I heard a quieter report maybe a second before the loud one; it was the first that woke me up.

  • Trying! August 4, 2012 (3:02 pm)

    We have been watching a white van that is frequently seen stopped by the Genesee Hill School. Neighbors believe there is some drug dealing going on during the day. May have not been involved in the explosion but high-tailed it out of there! when the explosion went off?! Still all speculation. I’m working at the school, tomorrow. I’ll thoroughly inspect the grounds although I suspect the police already have.

  • Trying! August 4, 2012 (3:09 pm)

    Talked to a friend that lives right by the Genesee school and she said that some kids were shooting off bottle rockets. She thought it might have been a M80 that caused the big boom.

  • bsmomma August 4, 2012 (4:02 pm)

    But people in California and across the water heard this too! Coincidence?

  • Trying! August 4, 2012 (8:09 pm)

    Across the water, I can’t say. But when you set-off a M-80 on a large expanse of asphalt you will get a broad vibration and deep echo.

  • helloh? August 4, 2012 (11:28 pm)

    why aren’t the police putting out any reports? if there is a domestic bomber…?

  • evergreen August 5, 2012 (12:11 am)

    This happened on 7/4 in our neighborhood, near Erscolini- explosive, thundering boom and flash of light. Not your normal fireworks. Scary that someone finds this entertaining.

  • sam-c August 5, 2012 (10:27 am)

    who said people in California heard it?

    I didn’t even hear it in west seattle

  • NESeattle August 5, 2012 (11:06 am)

    Could be a transplant from NE Seattle. Up until a few years ago, we had loud window-shaking explosions once or twice a year. Seemed to be centered at Nathan Hale High School and could be heard/felt across Wedgwood, Meadowbrook and Lake City neighborhoods. The rumor going around was that someone was making nitroglycerin since it was much louder than a M-80 or M-100. Thought they stopped because they grew out of it. Sounds like they moved to West Seattle instead.

  • Rex Mundi August 5, 2012 (5:53 pm)

    I caught one of these last night. I was out back (in SE PDX), and having a late-night cigarette. My dog was with me. When in happened, I saw the flash in the air and the sound hit my chest with force. The echo sounded for quite a while, rumbling off the hills around. And yes, my dog was freaked out.
    My guess is that these phenomena from Seattle to San Francisco is the effect of ram-pulse engines on military aircraft. These engines create a massive explosion (or series of explosions) behind the craft to propel it forward, rather that traditional jet thrust. So, thanks, Uncle Sam for testing that shizz over our heads while we’re sleeping. Jerk. :)

  • CJS August 5, 2012 (8:24 pm)

    There were also at least three loud booms, similar to thunder, Saturday night around 11:00pm. I live just north of the Junction. It was similar enough to thunder that I checked the National Weather Service website to see if perhaps some small storms popped up due to the heat. Nothing was on radar though.

  • John August 6, 2012 (6:25 am)

    I thought I was dreaming until I saw this article. I fell asleep in my living room when I heard the BOOM. It didn’t sound like thunder to me. It sounded more like an explosion or a bomb that fell. I live in West Seattle and the boom sounded as if it came from the north towards downtown. I never mentioned what I heard because I thought I might have been dreaming.

  • sjm August 6, 2012 (7:46 am)

    We live right behind the Genessee Hill school. For years, every 4th of July there’d be something like this, really big and really loud, set off in the field. That’s exactly what it sounded like, same place, same window shaking, same jumping awake.

    Wouldn’t surprize me if there was a hole in the field again.

  • Oscar August 6, 2012 (9:20 am)

    Weird booms are being heard nationwide. Just do a Google search on “mystery booms.” What is it? Experimental military craft? New weapon? The End Times? The earth groaning in pain? Dunno. Where is Columbo?

  • Caitlin August 6, 2012 (2:03 pm)

    I went to the Genessee Hill School park area Sunday morning and there was a giant (already exploded)firework there. I’m assuming that is what the loud noise was. It is probably still there today.

  • Peter August 6, 2012 (3:16 pm)

    Has there been a local news report on it?

  • WSB August 6, 2012 (3:21 pm)

    We *are* local news. If you mean citywide media, no, they don’t usually do anything on loud noises in the middle of the night, without some confirmation – we put this up just to let people know it wasn’t just them, lots reported it, and we looked into it. And while there are many theories, there’s nothing confirmed – and there’s nothing on the police-report map for that area for the past few days. Going to make one last try … TR

  • Peter August 6, 2012 (3:47 pm)

    Thank you, yes I would try to looking up any audio on your local police station radios to see if they heard anything. I’m considering adding your incident as a USB but I need more conformation and verification by local authorities or news stations. What you hearing maybe a USB, I’ll try contacting the news stations for any reports. I’ll let you figure out what USB stands for.

  • MMB August 6, 2012 (9:15 pm)

    An M-80, I believe, is an 8th-stick of dynamite. Some cretin with connections in construction or something may have gotten a quarter-stick or something, based on the descriptions. I haven’t heard one of those in a long time (thank goodness) but I’d venture to guess our booms are cretins with dynamite in some form or another. Nothing terribly mysterious about it.

  • smith August 6, 2012 (10:58 pm)

    seconds ago a loud boom, heard from rose and fauntleroy. sounded like it was from north end of Lincoln park? Sounded just like the boom I heard last week while near sw52nd and Andover. Interested if anyone else heard it?

    • WSB August 6, 2012 (10:59 pm)

      We’re just uphill from there, with windows open in that direction, relatively silent in the house but I didn’t hear a thing – TR

  • Nick August 11, 2012 (1:28 am)

    It’s happening over here in Portland, Or. For the past two weeks, one boom every other day or so.

  • matttafakt August 11, 2012 (4:43 am)

    I initially reported from San Francisco last Friday on Aug 4th. These were large booms which i thought were somebody’s bass in a car. I walked outside and it became apparent that it was very big and very far away. I did not see the flashes in the sky but several people i spoke with said they saw the bluish flashes within the SF bay Area. It was a deep rumbling that seemed to go off in intervals. They’d go off one after another with different amplitudes and then stop. Then it would start again and then stop. Some were huge, some medium, some small. And this repeated about 4 times over a 25 minute period. I can’t understand why nobody else has reported this? Everyone i called said they heard it, but No reports is just weird !

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