Tuesday, August 17, 2010

UFO in Washington today, scrambles 2 F-15s

The Associated Press Related SEATTLE —
"Emergency agencies across Western Washington are getting calls from numerous people who heard and felt a double boom about 1:50 p.m. Tuesday."

A touch spooky today....

Both my kids today, called me. They said, "did you hear those two explosions?"

I said, "No."

They were a little nervous. So I looked into it. I knew President Obama was in Seattle for Senator Patty Murry's election campaign, I thought maybe a celebration, fly overs, sonic booms? Or maybe, something bad? My son was near the nuclear sub base at Bangor. He said Jets were flying over head in a search pattern. That made me suspect sonic boom even more than when I first heard there were two loud sounding explosions.

Trust me, almost always, anything juicy like this, will turn out to be nothing. It used to be that way anyway, until, 9/11. As it turns out, just as I was telling people, its probably just some wayward pilot who didn't hear about the restriction and sure enough, just a pilot coming back from Lake Chelan in a float plane, heading to a plane harbor on Lake Washington.

First on line with an update: The Oregonian, a newspaper out of Portland indicating there were many region wide reports. Finally, KOMO TV 4 online came up with a report that there was an invasion of FAA restricted air space. Initially, a UFO:

"F-15 fighter jets scrambled from Portland to deal with an unknown aircraft that had entered restricted air space over Western Washington caused two sonic booms that were heard across a wide swath of the region, the FAA reported Tuesday."

Nothing unusual really. When you restrict airspace, this frequently happens. But since 9/11, they are not screwing around anymore. This is not any longer, your daddy's emergency alert:

"A spokesman with the Oregon Air National Guard said two F-15s from their 142nd Fighter Wing were scrambled on a "real world mission" from their base at Portland International Airport but could not elaborate on what the mission entailed."

When they break the sound barrier to get somewhere and bring on this kind of notoriety in the media, they are NOT screwing around. These fliers were on the way to a real threat and taking it as an a priori that they would take care of business.

Well, one good thing about it, that I told my kids of, was that once you hear a sonic boom, you can usually tell the next time what you're hearing. Although, the last big earth quake we had around here, started unusually with a boom reminiscent of, but I even then I had realized wasn't, what sounded like a jet breaking the sound barrier. With this one there were reports of curtains blowing in people's windows, not usually an earth quake kind of behavior.

Anyway, even though the jets arrived after the plane hand landed, Thanks guys (or girls, or a mixture therein)! And have a beer, on me.

KOMO News release


  1. I'm in Portland, I didn't hear a thing. But then, I left a disposable lighter on the table in the sun and it exploded to bits. I found the bits, but never heard the explosion. That would have been cool to see, too. Dammit.