Mystery Boom Heard and Felt in Van Buren County, Michigan

(Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

(Emily Wayland / Singular Fortean Society)

The Singular Fortean Society was contacted by a resident of Allegan, Michigan, on Saturday, March 30th, who said that not only had she experienced a series of mystery booms that day, but that other residents in her area had taken to social media to post about it.

"Not long ago I heard and felt a really deep BOOM," wrote the witness, who lives on Eagle Lake. "I looked around the outside of the house, nothing was there to see. In the [Gobles Now Facebook page], people are saying they heard the boom and wondering what the heck it was. Someone posted [an article by the Singular Fortean Society on mystery booms]. I’ll be watching the Facebook Page to see if anyone finds out what it was."

The original report came in at 5:38 p.m. and was followed just a few minutes later by the witness posting again.

"Just heard another one five minutes ago! A really loud, deep boom, and felt vibrations from it," she said.

Another local resident started a thread on the Gobles Now Facebook page to inquire into the strange sounds.

"Anyone know what that big explosion noise was over by Three Legged Lake around 5:40 p.m. on Saturday?" she asked.

Residents within a twelve mile radius of Three Legged Lake—including Eagle Lake, North Lake, and the cities of Gobles and Grand Junction—reported hearing the booms.

The Singular Fortean Society contacted the Van Buren County Sheriff’s Department to ask if residents had reported any unusual booms.

"I have heard of nothing relating to this," Captain Virg Franks of the Van Buren County Sheriff's Department said in his response. “This is interesting to me though. I believe it was springtime during 2001, the out house at the Three Legged Lake boating access was destroyed by an explosion. That, to my knowledge, was never solved. At the time, I wondered if it was someone close by who was experimenting with building improvised bombs of some type.”

The Singular Fortean Society provided Capt. Franks with the details of the reports and directed him to the Gobles Now Facebook page, but did not provide any witness information; instead, witnesses were notified of the department’s interest and left to decide on their own whether or not to contact authorities.

Reports of mysterious booms—sometimes accompanied by flashes of light and/or minor tremors—have been on the rise worldwide since 2017, continuing throughout 2018 and into this year. The booms have been reported across the United States in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, North and South Carolina, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wisconsin; as well as in the countries of Russia, Denmark, England, and Australia.

Meteors and other natural events—such as frost quakes—remain popular explanations for the booms, and bolide meteors were blamed for mystery booms in California, Michigan, and Washington in 2018. However, no blanket explanation covers every occurrence of a mystery boom and many cases go unexplained entirely.

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