Skip to main content

What Is Causing the Hum Around the World?

I have a curiosity for humanity's darker side and I love doing research so I've combined those two things to write in-depth articles.

A strange hum sound has been reported around the world for years. Is it just natural processes, or something more?

A strange hum sound has been reported around the world for years. Is it just natural processes, or something more?

The Hum Description

The Hum has been described as a low-frequency humming or rumbling noise, similar to a distant idling diesel engine. Scientists have ruled out any home appliances that also make similar types of low-frequency humming.

People who can hear this humming say they can hear it outside in areas such as cities but also in the country side and even indoors. It seems most predominant at night and for some people, it’s making their lives miserable and even causing insomnia.

Where Is It Most Common?

The reports of this hum are fairly widespread with a majority of the reports coming from the UK and USA. Some areas have so many reports that they have their own names for the hum. The Bristol Hum, Taos Hum and Windsor Hum are the three most popular and publicized locations.

In Bristol the Hum had been recorded as far back as 1970 and at first the residence claim they only heard it at night and made it difficult to sleep. Authorities put it off saying it was just factory noise or eclectic pylons. Some residence liked to believe it was the noise from alien space ships or secret military crafts. After some time, the hum stopped as suddenly as it had began but it had seemed to have made its way to other towns across Britain. Over the years the Hum has come back and even to this day, some people say that they can still hear it.

The Taos Hum is heard in a New Mexico city that claims only about 2% of people can hear this invasive tone. The residence started to report mysterious hums back in 1990 and the people who could hear this noise had been dubbed “The Hearers”. The weird thing is that these Hearers all claim to hear different sounds. Some described it as a whir, a buzz or a hum and when scientists tried to set up sensitive equipment in the homes of the people who claim to hear the noise, the results were not what they expected. They found nothing unusual in the homes, no out of the ordinary noises, no abnormal vibrations, no answers.

The Windsor Hum is probably the most famous location in the case of this mysterious noise. It almost seems to be worse in this area as it is reported to last longer and can grow in the intercity of the sound. Some residents said the noise can get so loud that it shakes windows and scares family pets. It’s even said to be causing health problems and interfere with the quality of life for some of the people who can hear it.

It’s unknown how long ago the Windsor Hum has been around but reports popped up around 2012. Some people who can hear this noise say even when they try to go on a trip to get away from the sound, they can still hear it or they will hear a different mystery sound.

Who Does It Affect?

With all the reports and research done, it doesn't seem that the Hum affects any specific people. It seems to be very random as to who can hear it. It’s a pretty evenly split between the number of men and women who can hear this mystery noise. It also affects people of any age, young and old and everybody in between.

Here is a map of Hum Reports.

Here is a map of Hum Reports.

What Do Experts and Scientists Say?

A French scientists claims to have solved the case of the Hum and knows where it’s coming from. He claimed that the source of this humming is the ocean floor vibrating due to large continuous waves. This answer does not sit well with other scientists and experts, however, as it doesn't explain why the noise starts and stops so suddenly in certain areas and why it comes back over the years.

Some experts claim it could be as simple as distant traffic or wind turbines. Other ideas are that it’s a medical condition, but that doesn't exactly make sense either unless a whole town can get tinnitus all at once.

One slight possible explanation scientists have is animals. They claim the midshipman fish, or toadfish, could be the cause. When these fish make their mating call it can sometimes be a short growling or a long humming noise that can last for up to an hour. These noises can be heard by many people naturally but it’s questionable if this could be the source of certain area’s mystery hum. This could explain the humming people hear when they live on houseboats, however.

Another theory experts and scientists have is that it could just be due to stress, or people picking up on normal everyday background noises that they just never noticed before. Because the sounds all seem to be different depending on location and person, they believe it’s a natural phenomenon and not something otherworldly.

The main theory that scientists and experts have though is simply mechanical devices. This goes with the background noises as stated above, but they think it could be sounds coming from factories or buildings, possibly distant traffic or airports and ships in the port.

The Public's Thoughts

A man from Windsor Canada, Mike Provost has started a Facebook group dedicated to finding the source of the sound. He posts regularly and has been following reports of this noise for several years. He will write down the location, time and intensity of the incident. Others that can hear the Windsor hum chime in too when they have an experience or ideas.

Mike believes the noise is coming from Zug Island in the USA that is just five miles from Detroit. He says the island is owned by U.S. Steal and that they refuse to cooperate and are very secretive about what goes on. They even have their own personal security on the island and don’t allow unauthorized people to enter. When people take boats close to the island they can hear an odd low-frequency noise but it’s not the same as what the residence of Windsor hear. It is similar to the sound but not exact.

Other more imaginative people who can hear this hum, and even those who can’t say, it could possibly be a UFO in the skies spying on us. They think it could be noises coming from strange crafts in the sky whether it be an alien UFO or even a secret military UFO. They think the government could be experimenting with machines or crafts and could be causing these mystery noises. Possibly a US military secret experiment on other countries as well to test sonic weapons or something of that nature.

My Thoughts

From looking at the research and watching several videos on this phenomenon and hearing testimonies I have to say I don't have a theory. I honestly don't know what this Hum could be. I don't know if it's natural or from factories but it seems like because the mystery noise is different for every location and the intensity varies, it's most likely not just one source. I think it could be from a multitude of sources such as factories like the Zug Island Steal factory or possibly some vibrating noises from the Earth.

I just honestly don't know what could be causing these mystery noises. What do you think is causing them?

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.


Jade Hassenplug (author) from Omaha on October 07, 2019:

That was a theory but it was shown that in areas that experienced the sounds didn't show any plate movement. But that is a good question.

ElijahMyers on October 07, 2019:

Could it be the tectonic plates?