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  • Writer's pictureNEMM

RAF confirm sonic boom heard over Melton was result of urgent response to civilian aircraft

The Royal Air Force has confirmed that a loud bang heard across the East Midlands yesterday was the result of a sonic boom.

Two RAF jets were scrambled after a plane lost radio contact heading towards London.

The plane, which had been flying from Iceland to Nairobi via Southend was escorted to Stanstead Airport by RAF jets and landed shortly before 12.50pm yesterday (Saturday 4 March).

The jets were given special permission to go supersonic due to the potential threat.

A sonic boom is when an aircraft breaks the sound barrier as a result of travelling over 750mph.

The voice recording appears to show the pilot of the jet speaking to the civilian plane.

An RAF spokesperson said: "Typhoon aircraft from RAF Coningsby offered assistance to a civilian aircraft and were authorised to fly supersonic earlier today. "

Residents in Melton were left puzzled yesterday lunchtime after the loud bang was heard just after mid-day and members of the public from across the Midlands took to social media to ask friends and family what the noise was.

A voice recording circulating on social media was obtained by a user of CB radio who was monitoring a random frequency when he picked up audio of the pilot speaking to the plane.

Leicestershire Police were quick to reassure the public after receiving emergency calls about the 'explosion'.

In a statement Essex Police said: "A flight has been diverted to Stansted Airport after communications with the pilot had been lost.

Two people - a pilot and co-pilot – were on board.

Officers engaged with them and carried out enquiries are satisfied there was a loss of contact due to an equipment malfunction and nothing of any concern.

The plane and those on board have now been released to continue their journey."

Leicestershire Fire & Rescue Service also confirmed they have received numerous calls about the noise.

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