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Boom that shook homes in Winston-Salem remains a mystery

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- A mysterious boom, which reportedly shook homes and rattled windows in Winston-Salem Saturday night, has officials stumped and people talking.

“It just sounded like a muffled explosion,” said Charles Walker, one of the many people who heard the boom.

Police say around 10:45 p.m. Saturday, they received numerous calls reporting a sound “similar to that of a loud explosion and windows of” callers’ homes shaking. They added that those reporting the information live in a several mile-wide radius from Tommy’s Lake Road to Bethania-Rural Hall Road.

“It sounded like something hit the side of the house,” said Eugene Nieto, who lives closer to the Rural Hall side of the reporting area, adding he thought “either a truck crashed or something exploded somewhere.”

Police responded, but found no evidence of any damage in the hours following the reports.

“It sounded like a legit concussion,” Nieto recalled. “It sounded like a bomb.”

On Monday, police say they checked with the Winston-Salem City Landfill, which is located off West Hanes Mill Road, but found no evidence of methane issues or any other explosions.

“That doesn’t normally happen,” Walker said. “It wasn’t thunder.”

Police say they, like people who experienced the boom, are puzzled.

“I don’t know what it could have been,” said Helene Bouchard, who faintly heard the boom.

Dr. Kenneth Taylor, North Carolina State geologist, tells FOX8 there is no data to confirm seismic activity in Winston-Salem Saturday night.

“It’s just one of those mysteries,” Walker said.

Police say three people called to report the boom on their emergency line, but several others reported it on the non-emergency line.

“We still need the mystery solved,” Bouchard said.