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Friday, June 14, 2024

What is that noise? Residents hearing bomb testing at Ocala National Forest

As bomb testing continues in the Ocala National Forest, residents have reportedly heard sounds throughout the city that never cease to startle them.

This week, the United States Navy has been conducting inert bomb testing for at least 12 hours each day at the Pinecastle Bombing Range within the Ocala National Forest.

Training exercises began on Monday, April 15, running from 10 a.m. to midnight. They continued on the same schedule on Tuesday.

Beginning on Wednesday, bomb testing will be conducted from noon to midnight. Bombs will be tested on that same schedule on Thursday, April 18, and Friday, April 19 as well.

Anyone who is traveling in or around the Ocala National Forest is advised to use extra caution and to be on the lookout for temporarily displaced wildlife.

On Monday, multiple Ocala-News.com readers living in Ocala reported hearing large popping sounds during the day. Residents living in the area are advised to secure items around their homes that could attract wildlife.

Each year, the Navy tests approximately 20,000 bombs at the Pinecastle Bombing Range Complex, which is over 5,700 acres in size. In addition to inert (inactive) bombs, the Navy is authorized to use 500-, 1,000-, and 2,000-pound live bombs during the testing.

For more information, visit the U.S. Forest Service’s National Defense Land Use webpage. For Noise Complaints, email nasjax.noisecomplaints@us.navy.mil.