DOD official: Fighter jets caused East Coast sonic boom

A Department of Defense official confirms that tremors felt in New Jersey were caused by F-35C fighter jets out of Maryland.

Many in New Jersey felt their homes shake Thursday afternoon. The Department of Defense says it came from sonic booms cause by test flights by F-35C fighter jet based out of Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Maryland.

Many in New Jersey felt their homes shake Thursday afternoon. The Department of Defense says it came from sonic booms cause by test flights by F-35C fighter jet based out of Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Maryland. (1/28/16)

EDISON - The U.S. Department of Defense confirms that the sonic boom that shook parts of South Jersey and New York were caused by fighter jets based out of Maryland.

Lt. Col. Tom Crosson says that the source of the sonic boom came from an F-35C fighter jet that originated out of Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Maryland.

The F-35C is a newer aircraft that was going through development testing flights for the Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force. It is also known as the F35 Lightning 2 Joint Strike Fighter.

The jet has a top speed of nearly 1,200 mph.

According to the DOD, a number of tests were conducted Thursday afternoon that caused the jets to travel at supersonic speeds.

Residents reported feeling tremors and shaking Thursday afternoon. Police departments across the state were inundated with calls and tried to confirm where the tremors were coming from.

The booms were heard as far away as Connecticut.

Navy spokeswoman Connie Hempel says supersonic test flights are conducted almost daily in the same area but that most sonic booms aren't felt on land.

She says certain atmospheric conditions can increase the chance of hearing the booms.

U.S. Geological Survey geophysicist Bruce Presgrave says nine booms were recorded over 90 minutes.

It was initially thought to be an earthquake, but the United States Geological Survey says that no seismic activity took place.

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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