Tremors follow ‘thundering’ sound

James Kon

A thundering sound was heard at 11am in various parts of the country yesterday, followed by tremors which lasted five to eight seconds.

According to online comments and reports, the strange ‘explosion’ was heard and felt across the border in Limbang, Beaufort, Sipitang, Kuala Penyu and Labuan.

One reader, who wishes to be known as Mr Lim, said he heard the explosion while working at his office in Beribi.

“I thought it was a plane flying very low causing the ground to rumble,” he told the Bulletin.

Nurul Ameerah, a resident of Sungai Akar, said, “I was in the kitchen when I heard the loud sound and felt the vibrations. The sound seemed to come from the skies.”

Local celebrity Wu Chun recalled, “I was watching television with my family, when I heard it and felt it rattling the place. The children did not notice anything, but my wife and I looked at each other and asked, ‘What was that?’”

The Astronomical Society of Brunei Darussalam (PABD), meanwhile, said it has been inundated with eyewitness reports of an alleged giant fireball or disintegrated meteor streaking across the daytime sky.

According to the PABD report, a huge fireball that boomed over the Sultanate’s skies “was bright enough to be seen in broad daylight”.

One witness was 22-year-old Haziq, who attempted to take a photo of a bluish-green light falling from the sky over Mulaut.

“It grew really bright and then faded to orange-red for a fraction of a second,” he said.

Haziq from Sengkurong eyewitnessed the blazing meteor and photographed the smoky trail with a “ring smoke” (circled in green) which only last for few seconds before finally disappeared. Haziq/PABD

An anonymous observer reported seeing the same meteor streaking over Lumut.

“I believe I saw a meteor on our approach to land at Anduki Airfield at around 11am, but I did not hear any explosion due to the noise from the helicopter.”

The phenomenon was also sighted in the Temburong District.

According to Lau Su Chieng, “a colleague saw a blazing trail of fire in the sky above the Ulu Temburong National Park, followed by an explosion”.

The National Seismic Centre (NSC) under the Technical Services Department of the Public Works Department (JKR) said in an online notice the NSC system detected moderate seismic activity at 11.30am that was clearly not caused by an earthquake within Brunei Darussalam or neighbouring countries, and that the seismic activity was felt by a number of locations in the country.