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Sonic increase sparks alarm as British fighter jets escorts aircraft to airport

LONDON (Reuters) – British fighter jets escorted a private plane to London’s Stansted Airport after it lost communication with the ground on Tuesday and raised the alarm after breaking the sound barrier in response to the incident.

People from London to Cambridge, about 65 miles north of the capital, reported on social media that they heard of an explosion or a large explosion that had shaken homes.

“The RAF can confirm that Rapid Reaction Alert Typhoon aircraft were launched this afternoon by RAF Coningsby to intercept a civilian aircraft that had lost communication,” a Royal Air Force spokesman said.

“Communication was then restored, the aircraft intercepted and safely escorted to Stansted. The Typhoon aircraft were allowed to fly at supersonic speed for operational reasons. “

Stansted, London’s third largest airport in the northeast of the capital, confirmed that the private jet had landed safely just before 1340 GMT.

Reporting by Michael Holden, Editing by Estelle Shirbon