- Eliot Kleinberg Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Numerous people who hadn’t read or heard reports that military jets would be roaring low over Palm Beach County on Wednesday morning, some of them just 3,500 feet off the ground, took to social media to describe unsettling flyovers.
But if anyone insisted they heard a sonic boom, they’re mistaken, a military spokesman said Wednesday.
“Sonic booms would be shattering glass,” Maj. Andrew Scott said from Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida’s Panhandle. Tyndall coordinates for the North American Aerospace Defense Command for the continental United States.
“If there was a sonic boom, you would know about it,” Scott said. He said Wednesday’s security exercise did not call for breaking the sound barrier, an action he said the military doesn’t take likely and that requires approval.
Scott also said the exercise took place without incident and was over by noon.
The training mission, “designed to hone NORAD’s intercept and identification operations through a series of Air National Guard F-15 and Civil Air Patrol C-182 aircraft training flights,” was related to patrols by the military when President Donald Trump spends weekends in Palm Beach, authorities said Tuesday.
They also took the opportunity to remind aviators that the president plans to be at Mar-a-Lago this weekend, and pilots who plan to be in the area should check the “notice to airmen” — also known as NOTAM — that the Federal Aviation Administration issues every time there’s a presidential flight restriction.
When the president visits his winter White House, all air operations, with a few exceptions, are prohibited within the 10-mile inner circle ring centered on Palm Beach International Airport. Certain operations are allowed in the outer ring extending 30 miles from the airport.