Cyprus Mail
Europe

Quiet please: French jet’s sonic boom shakes Paris, disrupts tennis

File Photo: Rafale Fighter Jets Induction Ceremony In Ambala
A Rafale fighter jet

A French fighter jet broke the sound barrier on Wednesday as it scrambled to join a commercial jet that had lost contact with air traffic control, causing a sonic boom that reverberated through Paris and its suburbs, the defence ministry said.

The boom rattled windows, scattered startled birds, briefly interrupted tennis at the French Open and prompted a flood of calls to emergency services.

In a city already tense after a knife attack outside the former offices of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo on Friday, the blast sent people on to their balconies to see what had caused it and prompted intense messaging on social media.

“A Rafale (warplane) based at Saint-Dizier, intervening to assist an airline which had lost contact, was allowed to break the sound barrier to join the airplane in trouble. It broke the sound barrier east of Paris,” army spokesman colonel Stephane Spet said in a statement.

He added that seconds after the boom – which happened at an altitude of 10 km and was magnified by cloud cover – the passenger jet, an Embraer 145, reestablished contact with air traffic control.

France’s DGAC civil aviation authority said the warplane was despatched after contact was lost with two civil aircraft.

It said that one was a Falcon 50, operated by a private Brazilian company, on a flight between Cape Verde and Brussels. The other was an Embraer 145, operated by regional airline Amelia, on a flight between the French cities of Brives and Saint-Brieuc.

DGAC said communication with both aircraft had been restored, adding that it would launch an inquiry into why contact had been lost.



Related posts

Turn of Pakistan PM to accuse Macron – he is attacking Islam by ‘encouraging’ blasphemous cartoons

Reuters News Service

UK police say dealing with incident aboard vessel off English coast

Reuters News Service

Spain announces new state of emergency as COVID infections soar

Reuters News Service

Archbishop Pizzaballa appointed Jerusalem Patriarch

Reuters News Service

Turkey extends east Med survey, Greece calls it an ‘illegal move’ (updated)

Reuters News Service

France recalls envoy after Turkey scolds Macron over Muslims

Reuters News Service