Military jets caused supersonic booms after they were scrambled to escort an “unresponsive” passenger plane that set off from Paris.
Deafening supersonic booms which shook houses were heard in Wakefield, Castleford, Pontefract and Leeds after the Royal Air Force Typhoon jets launched from RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire.
A Ministry of Defence spokesperson said last night: “Quick reaction alert Typhoon aircraft were launched today from RAF Coningsby to identify an unresponsive civilian aircraft.
“Communications were re-established and the aircraft has been safely landed.”
The flight was later confirmed by Air France to be one of its planes bound for Newcastle that had encountered communication problems.
Dozens of residents across the district posted messages on social media after hearing the booms.
One said on Twitter: “Sonic boom over #Wakefield? Woke the kids, people out in the street. Two loud booms.”
And Hemsworth MP Jon Trickett tweeted: “If it was the RAF, it makes me think that we should remember professionalism and courage of our armed forces. Ready at a moment’s notice.”
Another tweet read: “Was that a#sonicboom#explosion just heard in Wakefield!!”
Sonic booms are caused after an aircraft reaches such a speed that it breaks the sound barrier, travelling faster than the speed of sound.
Air France later tweeted from its official UK account: “Air France confirms that due to a radio communication problem AF 1558 had to be accompanied by two British fighter aircrafts 1/2.
“The aircraft landed in Newcastle at 22.20 (LT). Safety of clients & crew is an absolute priority. 2/2”