Loud boom in Lebanon County leaves people puzzled

“We just heard this big boom and the house shook,” said one Lebanon County resident.

“We looked at each other and I said, ‘Thunder?’ And they said, ‘I don’t think so,’” said another.

A rattling boom heard all across Lebanon County around 9:30 at night on New Year's Eve.

“An explosion…I thought there was an explosion somewhere."

“It was heard for so far. I mean, New Holland just to Annville is far.”

No one knows what it was…but we can tell you what it wasn’t.

The first, probably most obvious thought is a firework.

But those who heard it say there’s no way a firework would be this loud and reach that far.

Another idea?

A training exercise at Fort Indiantown Gap, but a spokesperson from the army post tells us they had nothing going on that night, and they are just as puzzled as everyone else.

An earthquake, maybe?

Not likely. The Pennsylvania Geological Survey tells Fox 43 in a statement they do not see any seismic activity in that area or around that time.

But one thing to consider is that it was a rainy night.

And while there were no thunderstorms in the forecast that evening, Fox 43’s Chief Meteorologist MaryEllen Pann says it is possible Lebanon County got hit with a strong lightning bolt.

“I had reports from Greencastle, Franklin County, Adams County, Winterstown, York County, that they had heard thunder. And even here at the studio I was in the newsroom and heard this rolling sound which turned out to be thunder. So this line moved eastward and I just think there’s a high probability that the sound people might have been the thunder,” said Pann.

The truth is, we may never know what caused the noise.

Lebanon County Emergency Management Agency tells us since there was no damage or injuries, they will not be investigating further.

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