Rumble felt in Broward, Miami-Dade and Florida Keys

U.S. Geological Survey says it wasn’t an earthquake

WESTON, Fla. – What’s shaking, South Florida? On Friday afternoon, it was definitely something.

From north Broward County all the way down to the Keys, residents in several parts of the region reported feeling a “rumbling” Friday afternoon that made them wonder if there might have been an earthquake or sonic boom.

The cause of the mysterious rumble has not been determined, but the U.S. Geological Survey tells Local 10 News that it wasn’t an earthquake.

“We got reports of people experiencing shaking in the South Florida area around 1:15 p.m.,” said Paul Caruso, a USGS geophysicist. “Our computers did not locate any earthquakes automatically, so we looked at all the seismometers and we did not detect any earthquake activity.”

In the past, military jets breaking the sound barrier have caused similar reports in South Florida.

One viewer in Miami spotted a military jet flying north to south unusually low, which could explain a lot, but at this point, local authorities are still trying to confirm what caused the unusual shake.

No injuries or damages have been reported, but it created quite a stir for unsuspecting residents.

Viewers in several Broward County cities, as far north as Coconut Creek, called our newsroom to report what they felt after 1 p.m. Calls also came from Weston, Sunrise, Plantation, Margate and Tamarac.

Some people in Miami-Dade were also reporting feeling something strange — including in West Kendall, Doral and Pinecrest — and emergency dispatchers in the Florida Keys were also taking calls.

The Broward Sheriff’s Office said it responded to an area in Weston where the shaking was reported and found nothing. Deputies were still checking around Friday afternoon.

The city of Weston posted a message on social media saying:

“In regard to the rumbling that people in Weston felt just earlier. There was NO explosion in #Weston. There are reports this was felt in several counties. We do not have definitive information on what caused it at this time.”

It was about a year ago — Jan. 28, 2020 — when South Florida could actually feel the effects of a 7.7 magnitude earthquake centered near Cuba.

As for Friday’s rumble, one viewer in Margate said her patio door shook for about 15 seconds and then the washer inside her home turned on.

Another in Pinecrest said he noticed what felt like a slight tremor for about eight seconds, and it caused a sliding glass door to shake.

Some on social media even hypothesized that the movement was caused by something paranormal.

Whatever it was certainly was abnormal.

Steve Friedman, a boat captain out of Islamorada, said he was fishing in Florida Bay near Flamingo when he felt and heard the rumble.

“Thought it was a jet fighter that we see frequently doing maneuvers. But didn’t see any,” he said. “That’s a long way away to feel whatever that was.”

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About the Authors:

David Selig is the Digital Executive Producer at WPLG, overseeing

Christian De La Rosa joined Local 10 News in April 2017 after spending time as a reporter and anchor in Atlanta, San Diego, Orlando and Panama City Beach.