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Two sonic booms rock Puget Sound

Two loud booms rattled offices and homes in the Puget Sound region around 1:50 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 17. According to the Tacoma News Tribune, the booms were felt from Gig Harbor to Seattle. KIRO TV says the vibrations were felt as far south as Chehalis.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reports the booms came from military aircraft, according to King5.com. President Obama is visiting the region today, and two F-15 jets came from Portland in response to a breach in air space by a private Cessna floatplane, reports said.

The speed for breaking the sound barrier is called Mach 1, attained once an aircraft reaches 761 mph at sea level. Sonic booms result from pressurized sound energy. They can range from building-shaking booms caused by a fighter jet, or a crack from a whip. Click here to learn more about sonic booms.

Immediately after the booms, customers and workers exited businesses at South 324th Street and Pacific Highway South in downtown Federal Way to inquire about the cause of the two window-shaking booms, which took place just seconds apart. People circled the building shared by The Mirror, Comcast and Main Japanese Buffet, searching for the source of the booms.

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