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Tuesday June 18, 2024

Florida residents panic as SpaceX Dragon makes splashdown

Residents say dogs started yelling when they heard the noise

By Web Desk
June 03, 2023
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket docks with the International Space Station (ISS) during the Demo-1 mission on Sunday. — AFP
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket docks with the International Space Station (ISS) during the Demo-1 mission on Sunday. — AFP

A loud boom that echoed across the Florida Panhandle was reported on social media by users late Tuesday night as the SpaceX Dragon capsule made its way down to Earth, splashing down in the Gulf of Mexico.

The inhabitants of the area took to Twitter to spread the word about the strange noise.

"We heard the boom here in Pensacola about 25 minutes [sic] ago!" a Twitter user tweeted in response to a tweet from the company that was live streaming the splashdown, which occurred at 11:04pm ET.

Some netizens from Pensacola reported that their dogs started to yell when they heard the noise, while others thought a tree branch had fallen on their roof.

According to WKRG, some locals even contacted 911 to report an explosion.

"If you heard a loud sound around 10pm and thought something hit your house, that was actually a sonic boom from SpaceX Dragon re-entering the atmosphere and making a splash down in the Gulf of Mexico near Panama City Beach," Santa Rosa County Emergency Management clarified in a Facebook post.

The SpaceX capsule was scheduled to make its return to Earth after a 10-day journey to the International Space Station.

The private aircraft, carrying two Saudi astronauts and two additional passengers, was dropped by parachute into the Gulf of Mexico 12 hours after docking at the orbiting lab, Fox News reported.

The Axiom Space Ax-2 crew included retired Nasa astronaut Peggy Whitson, Tennessee businessman John Shoffner, stem cell researcher Rayyanah Barnawi, and fighter pilot Ali al-Qarner.

Barnawai, who became the first Saudi woman in space, said Monday: "Every story comes to an end, and this is only the beginning of a new era for our country and our region."

On Sunday, May 21, the Dragon and Ax-2 crews boarded a Falcon 9 rocket at Nasa's Kennedy Space Centre in Florida for their flight to the space station.

The trip was Axiom Space's second private flight to the International Space Station. The company aims to have more clients by the end of the year.