DENVER — A shrill sound pierced the air in Denver Monday morning, stopping thousands in their tracks. Those who blinked may have missed it, but their ears couldn't have as nearly a dozen F-15s shot over the city and its suburbs.
The flights prompted questions from some who may never have heard fighters in flight, but others quickly identified the sound as the familiar booming sound of the various types of jets — from F-15s, F-16s, F-18s and more — that fly in and out of Colorado on a daily basis.
At least eight F-15s flew into Buckley Air Force Base on Monday starting at roughly 10:30 a.m., with several others following later in the day. Most of the jets were gone by 1 p.m.
Public Affairs Officer Maj. Kinder Blacke confirmed the jets stopped for refueling in Colorado during routine flights, and didn't take any actions out of the ordinary.
The flights were simply more audible, potentially due to a slightly lower flight pattern. Maj. Blacke couldn't confirm the ceiling of the flights during their approach into Buckley Air Force Base, but some suggest they were flying between 5,000 and 7,000 feet lower than the normal approach of 14,000 to 16,000 feet.
A Reddit user who identified himself as an air traffic controller also said the flights were routine, but were lower due to congested air traffic that day.
"In this case we had to punch them down and go right over the top of Centennial and then jam them into Buckley," the user wrote.
Maj. Blacke confirmed residents have nothing to fear when jets fly into Buckley Air Force Base, even if they can be vociferous. The Buckley Air Force Base works with the community to act as a good neighbor.
An excerpt from the website of the 140th Wing, which operates out of Buckley Air Force Base, explains they frequently fly, even in times of peace, to be prepared and well-trained for combat missions.
"We apologize for the nuisance that jet noise can be at times, but emphasize the safety of the community," the page reads.
Training flights take place between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m., with thousands thundering over Colorado each year in and out of Buckley Air Force Base alone.