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Middle Georgia residents say F-15 flyover damaged homes. Here’s how the Air Force responded

U.S. Air Force F-15C Eagle fighter jets assigned to the California Air National Guard's 144th flyover Fresno, Calif. on May 13, 2020. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Lt. Col. David Allamandola)

Homeowners in Bonaire and Kathleen said their houses were damaged after an Aug. 3 F-15 flyover.

The F-15 Eagle flyover was performed at approximately 11:20 am for a Southeast Region Little League Tournament game in Warner Robins.

After the flyover, several Facebook users said they thought the flyover was louder and closer to the ground than usual and said they thought there was a sonic boom. Some reported broken windows, shattered glass doors, vinyl fallen from their front porch ceiling or damage to their home’s foundation.

“It sounded like an airplane had crashed right outside on the street,” Bonaire resident Allyssa Lee said.

Kirstie Tarleton of Kathleen shared a clip from her baby monitor which she said caught video and sound from when the plane flew past her home at 11:22 am.

“I live about three miles from the Little League fields and the plane went right over my house,” Tarleton said. “It was the loudest sound I have ever heard. They say it did not break the sound barrier and it was at an approved altitude, [but] I am willing to put my life on it that those statements are false… I honestly thought it was some sort of terror attack or a plane coming down in my backyard.”

Roland Leach of the Robins Air Force Base Public Affairs office said the plane flew at an approved altitude above 1,600 feet and an appropriate speed below supersonic that did not create a sonic boom. The flight was authorized ahead of time by the Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs Aerial Events Support office and the local Federal Aviation Administration.

Robins Air Force Base officials said homeowners who believe their homes were damaged can file a complaint with the 78th Air Base Wing Office of Public Affairs and have their case investigated for possible reimbursement.

There were two sonic booms conducted miles south of Warner Robins as part of regular flight tests later that day. Leach said these F-15 flight tests were not related to the Little League game flyover.

Robins Air Force Base often conducts these tests on F-15 aircraft after they are repaired or modified.

“There’s a prescribed route that they have to fly that’s south of Robins, between Columbus all the way to Cordele,” Leach said. “That’s what they call the supersonic run … or Macon echo [route]. Normally those are flown over 40,000 feet. And when they go supersonic as far as the flight test, that’s when you hear a sonic boom.”


(c) 2022 The Macon Telegraph

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