Hundreds of people called into the Forsyth County 911 center this weekend, reporting that they felt an explosion.
The dispatch center was overwhelmed with calls.
Those four loud “booms” were heard both Saturday and Sunday in different areas in the Triad. The source is still a mystery.
“[We’re] Lewisville and there was just.. just now two huge explosions,” said one person who called into the 911 center in Forsyth County.
“We’re all out here. The whole neighborhood felt two large booms,” said another caller.
The explosion noises were heard and felt across different parts of Forsyth, Guilford, Rockingham, Surry, Davie, Stokes and Randolph Counties.
“The fourth time, I was like ‘oh my lord,” recalled Randolph County resident Donna Greene. “I was beside it, and it rattled. It rattled the fireplace.”
It rattled her too.
The “booms” broke the Saturday night silence and then again on Sunday afternoon.
“I didn’t hear about the Saturday booms until I made the [Facebook] post. [People] said they were hearing it in this area on Saturday too,” said Faye Potts, who lives in Reidsville. “[My neighbors] said they could hear it as well. It rattled the dishes.”
The mystery sound shocked a lot of people across the Triad as they tried to guess what those noises could be.
“I assumed it was tannerite or something,” Potts said.
“I’m thinking it was military doing manuevers. I really do think that,” Greene said.
Even the experts don’t have a concrete explanation.
“Some of the theories I heard were maybe some construction noises. Maybe a meteor. Just a host of things. Firecrackers or fireworks,” said Dan Leins, who works at the National Weather Service in Raleigh.
He and his staff tried to piece together the puzzle too.
“We weren’t able to see any showers, thunderstorms or anything in that area,” he explained. “No earthquake.”
Leins was able to give some insight as to why people more than 60 miles away heard and felt the same thing.
“The temperature in the atmosphere, normally, it gets colder as you go up [like in the mountains,” he said. “In this case, the temperature gets warmer as you get higher up.”
When these “temperature inversions” occur, like they did this weekend, it sets up the atmosphere for noise to travel further.
“The atmosphere was set up so if there was a noise, more people would be able to hear it than they would have otherwise,” Leins said.
While the temperature inversions wouldn’t allow people to hear something form hundreds of miles away, it does explain why so many people in the Triad heard and felt the explosion noises.
FOX8 did check with some local sheriff’s departments, and was told there were not any indications of criminal activity or any injuries related to these series of sounds.
Representatives with sheriff’s offices wanted to remind people not to call 911 unless it’s an actual emergency, so that people with immediate needs can get through the system.